FREYA RIDINGS // O2 INSTITUTE, BIRMINGHAM

Dazzling the crowd in a sequinned emerald green dress, Freya Ridings’ auburn curls shone brightly on the stage as she appeared with her guitar. Captivating Birmingham Institute’s main room, her angelic voice boomed around as a haze mood of purples and greens filled the room.

★★★★★

It's been quite an eighteen months for the London born singer songwriter, with her track "Lost Without You" propelling her into stardom having been featured in the 2017 Nokia advert.

Zipping through tracks poignantly, the raw emotion transfixed the baying crowd, treating them to classics from her "Live At The Omeara" album to newer material. Freya is fast becoming a national treasure. This enchanted evening by a home grown artist with tracks like "Poison" and "Wishbone" left the audience in awe.  

Freya sits down at her piano and begins ‘Maps’, a cover track that sounds nothing like the original for every right reason. ‘Wait, they don’t love you like I love you...’ echoed throughout the venue, and the more she sang this line over and over, the more heartfelt and deep it became. It moved some audience members to tears, it was stunning. For a moment you could close your eyes and believe you were listening to a CD. 

It’s not often you see an upcoming artist perform and there is something magical about them and you can't put your finger on quite what it is. This was one of those nights watching how humble and thankful Freya was, she kept the audience's attention right up until the encore, performing her lesser known material. Watching them adore her was brilliant, even though they were some waiting for that one song - the one that should be thanked for her not one, but two sell out Birmingham shows just months apart.

"Sometimes you write a song in a state of heartbreak and of sadness and desperation, thinking that no one will hear it and it becomes amazing. Tonight Birmingham if you can sing it with me" she introduced the haunting ballad as the crowd obliged willingly, going wild for Freya's most recognised track of the setlist, ‘Lost Without You’.

As the Birmingham crowd sang in harmony lifting the venue, Freya 's poignant lyrics belted out the modern day anthem showcasing her strong vocal abilities, easily described as a cross between Florence and Paloma Faith. Her vocal capacity has some incredible strength already at her young age of 23, and she seems wise beyond her years as the mature crowd hung onto each note that you could almost hear a pin drop within the venue. An audience so quiet and polite in order to not miss a thing. 

With the audience treated to both new and old material,  there is more to her than just one song that put this girl on the map. As a beautiful night drew to a close it was time to show a feistier side as Freya played the catchy "Holy Water" taken from her upcoming album due to be released. 2019 is gonna be the year we hear so much more of this talented artist and for anybody questioning, she is a must see live!

SETLIST: | FREYA RIDINGS : O2 INSTITUTE, BIRMINGHAM - 09.03.2019

  • Love Is Fire

  • Signals

  • You Mean The World To Me

  • Poison

  • Blackout

  • Wishbone

  • Unconditonal

  • Maps

  • Ultraviolet

  • Lost Without You

  • Holy Water

FREYA RIDINGS | UPCOMING TOUR DATES:

REVIEW BY: HAYLEY CLARK
PHOTOS BY: HOLLIE TURNER PHOTOGRAPHY

The Modern Record