Miles Kane has been one of the most enigmatic artists on the scene for the last decade and a bit, dropping massive solo tunes such as ‘Don’t Forget Who You Are’, ‘Inhaler’, and ‘Come Closer’, as well as being one half of The Last Shadow Puppets along with Arctic Monkeys’ frontman Alex Turner.
He was even lucky enough to be the subject of my first interview, which you can find here. Therefore, when I found out he was touring, I knew I had to be there, especially with such a brilliant venue as the Albert Hall, which is so much more atmospheric than your bog-standard Academy or Arena.
First of all, I must make it clear that the quality of the gig extended to the choice in support act – up-and-coming Scottish singer Brooke Combe lit up the room with her tunes, as well as later playing a stunning role in a cover of the Ike & Tina Turner song ‘Nutbush City Limits.’ She’s clearly got an incredibly bright future, and is definitely one to check out if you haven’t already.
Miles’ most recent album, Change the Show, was influenced much more by soul and Motown than anything else previously released. This was obvious as he opened his set with ‘Don’t Let It Get You Down’, an understated track which provided a solid base to kick on with. From there, he began to introduce the hits, with ‘Rearrange’, ‘Cry on My Guitar’, and ‘Coup de Grace’ all in quick succession – all were more energetic tunes which began to really get the crowd going.
Following these was ‘Loaded’, a slower song which, all things considered, is probably my favourite from his solo catalogue. All the while, he was performing in his classic style, crooning in his unmistakeable tone and seemingly flirting with everyone with him on stage as well as the entire audience too. Another track off the new album, ‘Caroline’, was next, rounding off the opening half-dozen songs played. It would only get better from here.
The aforementioned Ike & Tina cover was the first track to change it up a bit – this was Kane at his very best. Trading verses with Combe, both singers nailed every note in a performance which was an absolute credit to the original recording. Then came his first Shadow Puppets’ track of the night, with ‘Aviation’ and its ominous bass ringing out through the room.
After the brief flirtation with other material, the solo tunes were brought back out – first came the sunshine special ‘Blame it on the Summertime’, and then one of the standout tracks from the new album in ‘Nothing’s Ever Gonna Be Good Enough’, continuing the Motown theme from earlier on in the set.
Another fan-favourite ‘Don’t Forget Who You Are’ quickly followed, a tune which had the crowd bouncing all over the place to the iconic anthemic chorus. The title track from the new album was next, giving the crowd a much-needed chance to relax after the chaos of the previous tune.
Another cover was brought out afterwards, this time a Beatles track. ‘Don’t Let Me Down’ was a surprise choice, but in hindsight, the raspy vocals of the original were a perfect match for Kane – he absolutely nailed it. Following up this stupendous rendition were another two of the new tracks: ‘Never Tired of Dancing’ and ‘See Ya When I See Ya’ to top off his Change the Show catalogue for the night.
You’d think it couldn’t get any better by this point, and yet, Miles Kane being Miles Kane, he well and truly managed it. Tom Ogden (lead singer of Stockport pop-rock band Blossoms, for those of you living under a rock) swaggered onto the stage, and immediately joined Miles in a pair of fantastic tracks; firstly providing harmony for the classic Kane track ‘Colour of the Trap’, before playing the role of Alex Turner for the Shadow Puppets’ tune ‘Standing Next To Me.’ This was obviously a real treat for the crowd, who went even more wild than they’d managed before.
Following this, Kane walked off stage, leaving everyone wondering what they’d get for the encore. When it came, after a short break, it was the perfect way to cap off a great evening – the two biggest singalongs of the evening were reserved for two of his biggest hits: ‘Inhaler’ and ‘Come Closer.’ The latter of which, as tradition goes, had its chorus extended out way past the norm, with the crowd singing along every time Kane repeated himself.
All in all, it was an incredible show – you could say that it was Everything You’ve Come to Expect and more from a Miles Kane gig.