Reviews: Laura Marling, Nick Cave, Van Morrison, Aesop Rock, Gladys Knight, Run The Jewels

Today’s collection of concert critiques includes a review of Laura Marling’s performance in Glasgow; Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds in Auckland, New Zealand; Van Morrison in Las Vegas; Aesop Rock in Ashville, N.C.,; Gladys Knight in Mashantucket, Conn.; and Run The Jewels in Philadelphia. 

John Davisson
– Laura Marling
Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival, Great Stage Park, Manchester, Tenn.

Laura Marling @ Celtic Connections at Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow, Scotland, Jan. 19 – “Building from a bedrock of atmospheric strings, there were many intriguing flourishes: Marling’s plaintive vocal melody shadowed by a muted trumpet on ‘I Was An Eagle’; cinematic harp flurries emphasising the apocalyptic visions of ‘Hope in the Air’; a spine-tingling cover of Leonard Cohen’s ‘Avalanche.’” – Graeme Virtue / The Guardian 

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds @ Vector Arena in Auckland, New Zealand, Jan. 18 – “‘Higgs Boson Blues’ lifted the audience’s spirits as Cave’s lopsided dancing and gangly outstretched arms encouraged others to join him. But things really took off during the driving horror grooves of ‘From Her to Eternity,’ which saw Cave going into full manic preacher mode.” – Karl Puschmann / New Zealand Herald 

John Davisson
– Van Morrison
New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.

Van Morrison @ The Colosseum at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Nev., Jan. 13 – “It was an evening where performer and audience stayed on the same ‘Wavelength,’ another of the night’s highlights. But then, how do you choose a standout in a set full of them?” – Jason Harris / Las Vegas Weekly 

Aesop Rock @ The Orange Peel in in Ashville, N.C., Jan. 16 – “Aesop spent time between songs bantering with Sonic, DJ Zone and the audience, waxing philosophical about the career of the California Raisins, passing apples and oatmeal cookies back and forth with the crowd in the front row, and opening up an impromptu – if short-lived – Q&A session with audience members during breaks.” – Max Hunt / Mountain Xpress 

David Conger /
– Gladys Knight
Snoqualmie Casino, Snoqualmie, Wash.

Gladys Knight @ Grand Theater at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket, Conn., Jan. 14 – “Knight brought the audience back to the days when music was humble, folks were ‘dancing in the streets’ and Marvin had people asking ‘What’s Going On.’” – Shawn Costa / 

Run The Jewels @ Electric Factory in Philadelphia, Pa., Nov. 11 – “Thus, there is much to anticipate at a Run the Jewels concert and much was delivered to fans here. Fist-pumping, pogoing, moshing and chanting along began with the set’s opening spitfire recital of ‘Talk to Me,’ ‘Legend Has It’ and ‘Call Ticketron,’ all from the new album.” – Jim Fusilli / The Wall Street Journal