Updated: Mar 13, 2019
Review by Chris Watson and Sara Vian
The King Arthur, Glastonbury, 10th November 2018
Seeing Cary Grace live is a significant event, and friends who had expressed their disappointment in not being able to go and see her play ensured the attendance of myself and co-writer, Sara Vian on this night…
The King Arthur is a character-filled pub in the pulsating heart of iconic Glastonbury, and with highly effective, sensitive sound mixing from Paul O’Reilly and stimulating visuals by Lux Looper, it really is a great setting for a gig.
Just in time for the first set where Cary performed as YAMMA, usually an electronic duo with Basil Brooks. We were struck by a glittering futuristic vision of turquoise and silver; perfectly adorned with a slightly “Clockwork Orange” make-over, stood the fantastic Cary Grace with her unique synthesizer set-up and special guests making up the Band: Steve Everitt covering for Basil Brooks (synths/electric guitar), Mike Howlett, THE Grammy-winning producer from Gong (bass) and Graham Clark (guitar).
We were spirited away on a wave of psychedelic ambience; beautifully-constructed music with echoes of infinite space kept human by moody vocals, soft bass lines and chiming guitar. Cary was resplendently cool and reminded us of the beautiful replicant in Blade Runner that swept Harrison Ford away from the gloom… but of course, Cary is no replicant and has a glowing presence enhanced by her pure vocals that sweep you up into the quantum space of infinite possibilities; powerfully thrilling.
Many love synthesizers and the space rock sounds of progressive rock; it reminded us of early Pink Floyd, but with its own unique style, and with the wealth of talented musicians she attracts to play with her, we’d go as far to say that her live appearances are gaining cult status.
During the break, Cary transformed into a warmer persona for a more up-tempo rock-based set featuring bass-player, Andy Budge, who brought such a driving edge that we were reminded of the great Stranglers. 16 year old drummer, Robin Everitt (son of Steve!) also teleported in with respectable precision to further intensify the driving groove, and then Steve Everitt (central guitar) injected a much heavier psych-rock sound which soared with conviction into the stratosphere like a laser beam and burst into light-fantastic when it collided with the screaming acid-jazz-folk violin, expertly delivered by Graham Clark.
Cary’s commanding vocals echoed mesmerizingly through the room, unifying the mix into one entity and when they experimented with bringing the legendary Mike Howlett back on again for a two-bass-guitar-driven track, hyper-speed engine throttle engaged and enabled them to take off like an magnificent alien bird of prey which left you defenseless and irresistibly yearning to dance all night.
There is no doubt that Cary conveys a unique stage presence wherever she performs and having also listened to much of her back catalogue of 7 albums and 7 EP’s and singles, Cary’s music is now a unique addition to the feel-good pool of music.
Find out more about Cary Grace’s music at http://www.carygrace.com/
American born singer/ songwriter Cary adopted Somerset as her home since coming to Britain in 2005 and also has a UK analogue Synthesizer business see http://www.wiard.com/