For a singer like Jones, the quiet woman behind the ever-powerful single Hoops, the ICA seems like a decent little intimate gig. But then there’s a lot to be said for acts finding their feet in a live setting – the sheer talent and the undeniable voice that left her small frame was strong enough to save her from any faults the performance may have had, but the awkward interactions with the audience in between songs clearly reveal a performer very much in training.
Considering the overbearing instrumentation from her band, Jones still managed to maintain the majority of the audience but she does occasionally get swallowed in the choruses whenever the drums pick up. The acoustic numbers at the beginning and midway through the set help connect with her wavelength, but there’s a balance yet to be achieved between those warmer moments and the over-zealousness of her band.
But we found Jones as she lost herself in her own music, closing her eyes and clicking her fingers through Dark Knight, emphasising a shadowy tale within Hide and relating to the concept behind Lonely Cry. As she unleashes her unashamedly vulnerable cover of The Rapture‘s How Deep Is Your Love, the atmosphere transforms from ambient melancholy to upbeat nostalgia right before she leads us through those Hoops. That the single takes on a new form in its climax truly hammers home that Jones isn’t here to play any games. It just might serve her well to do it with a different backing band next time.