REVIEW: First Aid Kit come to life in Leeds

FIRST AID Kit rounded off their UK Rebel Heart tour in style at O2 Academy Leeds.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 14th November 2018, 1:44 pm
Updated Thursday, 15th November 2018, 6:24 pm
First Aid Kit at O2 Academy, Leeds (PIC: Anthony Longstaff)
First Aid Kit at O2 Academy, Leeds (PIC: Anthony Longstaff)

Starting out with two songs from their current album Ruins - Distant Star and It’s A Shame - they quickly brought in the Master Pretender from Stay Gold.

Although the Swedish sisters Klara and Johanna Söderberg emerged as one of folk’s bright new things - they mention how one of their early gigs was at Leeds' Brudenell Social Club (in 2009) - they are certainly getting rockier with every album.

There’s some big guitars here aligning with the quieter, whimsical moments.

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First Aid Kit in Leeds (PIC: Anthony Longstaff)

The upbeat King Of The Road is a true top-tapper with black and white images of Grace Kelly playing in the backdrop while Ugly - from the band’s Tender Offerings four-track EP - is anything but what it says in its title.

Throughout this belting set, at times haunting, at times angelic, their vocal range is superb.

For those who love singing siblings, the biggest moment may well have been when the Söderbergs were joined on stage by three more sisters - The Staves.

That group has been supporting First Aid Kit on this tour so it was always inevitable there’d be a point where they’d be on stage together.

First Aid Kit's Klara Sderberg at Leeds (PIC: Anthony Longstaff)

It’d have been a criminal wasted opportunity - for two masters of their crafts to unite - if it hadn’t happened.

The choice of song - a cover of The Roches’ Runs In The Family - was perhaps not the greatest to showcase their vast talent together but the harmonious number proved a hit for this audience nonetheless.

Where the crowd really get involved, though, singing back the chorus with real gusto, was Emmylou, arguably the highlight of this performance.

Hem of Her Dress was typically well-received, too, while King of the World and Wolf also found their place in the setlist.

For the encore, First Aid Kit rounded off this performance, and their run around the UK, with two songs from their current album - the tour’s eponymous Rebel Heart as well as Fireworks.

However, the denouement was the anthemic My Silver Lining, the hit that truly marked them out four years ago, and one that time and again and underlines their appeal.