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Basia Bulat Takes a Touch of Flair to the Sinclair

Music Reviews :: 04.05.16

IMG_3637By Alex LaRosa

Canadian singer-songwriter Basia Bulat, is currently on tour in support of her new album “Good Advice”. She stopped at the Sinclair Saturday night to play a show that featured tight musicianship and just a dash of flair. Backed by three other musicians, Bulat displayed her skill without ever seeming overconfident.

Opening that evening was Louisville -based Twin Limb, who glided through a set of psychedelic folk that leaned heavily toward the psychedelic side of things. The 3-piece band played for 45 minutes of spacey, aired-out music as the Sinclair filled up in preparation for Bulat’s show.

When the main act hit the stage at just past 10 p.m., the focus was shifted directly to Bulat’s singing voice. Her songs were built to display her vocal prowess, which was in full view Saturday night. Exploring the territory between breathy and bass-heavy, her voice was in excellent condition and withstood the entire night of music. Some songs wandered into Natalie Merchant-esque territory, and throughout, her fans were clearly having a good time.

For the first five songs, the band showed their cohesion by quickly moving from song to song. After the fifth, Bulat finally addressed the crowd in a friendly greeting. Throughout the night, the focus remained on the music, whether Bulat was on acoustic guitar, keyboard, or nothing but vocals.

Decked out in a glittery, golden, flower-lined outfit, she commanded attention during two songs where she accompanied herself on a small harp-like instrument. Afterward, the other members returned to the stage and were introduced, before diving back into the music. Despite her flashy appearance, never once in the performance did the band distract from the music played that night.

Midway through the set, she introduced one song with an invitation to dance with other audience members. The singer said, “If you came with somebody you want to dance with, now’s your chance.” While there wasn’t much space for dancing in the standing room only Sinclair, she still kept people moving all night.

Near the end of the set, she played Infamous  off her new record, to much applause, and then wrapped up with 2 more songs after that. In total, the band moved through 14 songs in 80 minutes. As the Sinclair emptied out for the night, Bulat’s show was surely going to be one to remember. But it was not theatrics or stage antics that made the night memorable; Bulat’s commitment to excellence in her music led to a stellar performance. A mix of flair and control, she shined on stage and left having accomplished everything that the music required.

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