LIVE REVIEW: Dua Lipa, Heaven London, 31/3/16

It’s hard not to get excited by a gig with Dua Lipa’s name in bright lights glaring at you from the stage. Pop’s a pretty hard old thing for a newcomer to nail, but there’s clearly something about a talent that can fill out a venue like Heaven in London this evening.

The young star opened the gig with new material which followed the style of her current three releases – songs like Hotter Than Hell and Mwah promise a strong debut album rather than a career of short-lived instant-satisfaction. Lipa’s voice was as unique and powerful as expected from her records, and translated well in a live environment. It’s that very voice carrying her performance, along with her band of course, but there was a slightly odd register in her false sense of confidence. There’s clearly a shy persona here, which was trying to be disguised behind constant walking back and forth on stage and some awkward dance moves. But hey, early days and all that.

When the percussion began for New Love, the breakthrough track, it was disappointing to be greeted with a slightly slowed down tempo, diluting the affect somewhat and encouraging a bit of drag and flatness in vocals and chorus. She did, however, end the gig with crowd favourite Be The One, which did not disappoint and was performed with the sort of high-powered sass one would expect from pop’s Next Big Thing. On tonight’s strength, it’s not hard to tell that Dua Lipa is full of greater potential than even she is aware – a few more rounds of solid touring and a more rooted confidence and that chart-topping mantle is hers for losing.

Shelley Cornes

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Dua Lipa, Heaven London, 31/3/16
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