LIANNE LA HAVAS | Love Supreme

With perhaps the exception of headliner Grace Jones, Lianne La Havas is certainly the coolest act of the Love Supreme Festival 2016.  In the midst of touring the world with Coldplay, the afternoon sunshine setting on the rolling countryside of Glynde is a world away from Wembley Stadium but the beam of La Havas’ smile could enrapture any setting.  With glimpses of jazz and soul as well as some R’n’B sitting somewhere between the two, she offers the jazz-heads an escape from burning saxophone solos and harmony stretching synthesizers to bask in her charismatic intimacy.

La Havas carries an understated sophistication to her elegance, coupled with the wide-eyed wonder of an excitable child in awe of her surroundings.  Her set is interspersed with brief anecdotes, but mostly punctuated by heartfelt thanks to the audience. For all the grace and finesse to her voice, it is her warmth that holds the crowd closest.

The hit ‘Unstoppable’ fizzed with energy and it was on ‘Never Get Enough’ she released the previously restrained roar that the set was looking for.  At times though, it felt like her repertoire didn’t quite do the vocal justice – there’s a bigger and bolder Lianne trying to find the song to break through, but perhaps this was a case of less is more: an acoustic rendition of ‘I Say a Little Prayer’ demonstrated that you don’t need pipes as big as Aretha’s to be in a with a chance of filling her shoes. With Burt Bacharach due to perform on the very same stage the next day, it was a more fitting choice than ever.

Read all of our reviews from Love Supreme here.

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