Review | Naoise Roo casts a spell over The Workman’s Club

Naoise Roo

The Workman’s Club, Dublin

Dublin native Naoise Roo has been gaining a lot of traction in 2015, and rightly so. Her debut album Lilith has received praise from the likes of GoldenPlec, The Irish Mirror, not to mention us here at HeadStuff, with her audience visibly growing with each passing gig. Friday night saw her take on The Workman’s Club with an intimate yet explosive set exploring heartbreak, sexuality, lust, and love, all with the brazen honestly of someone who you had a messy break up with a few months previously.

It was one of those beautiful-messy-audience-and-band-chatting-during-the-set gigs, but with the sincerity of a performance that makes the audience shut up and listen during pointed silences. The band were tight and controlled, with every measure meticulously considered. The result of this extensive attention to detail was a sound that embodied the gloom of debut album Lilith perfectly, and transformed the space into a canvas for Naoise and her player’s sultry sound. It felt like people were smoking inside, but weren’t, that kind of vibe.

The flow of the set list worked so well that it’s hard to pick out highlights. ‘Tie Me Up’ opened proceedings, establishing Naoise’s voice as the order of the evening. With impeccable control and strength, she silenced the room from the beginning, while also jolting the audience from their seats. ‘Uh Oh’ followed, and with the crowd firmly in the palm of her hand, she relaxed into the unique performer/audience relationship established, and it all started to get a bit sexy.

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The rest of the set followed with more highlights being the gorgeous ‘For You’, and her début single ‘Oh Son’. By this time, audience and performers alike had had a few more drinks, a few more chats, and by the time her beautiful rendition of PJ Harvey’s ‘This Is Love’ came around, we were all firm friends.

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The venue, the audience, and Naoise’s remarkable stage presence all pointed towards something bigger happening. With a firm fan base establishing, and an album with the strength of a songwriter twice her age, it’s safe to say that Naoise Roo is going to continue to absolutely kill it in the future, on the Dublin scene and beyond. It was a special and gorgeous gig, and I can’t wait to experience it all again.

Featured Image Credit: Brian McNamara