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Ezra Furman - Roundhouse, London, 17/11/2022

  by Steev Burgess

published: 20 / 3 / 2023

Ezra Furman - Roundhouse, London, 17/11/2022

With no spotlight to track her stage movements, Ezra eased up to her place by the microphone a little in her own shadow, holding a bunch of lilacs, wearing a black dress, flowery tights, a string of pearls and long lilac scarf, with black, punkish boots to finish the look. "Change it comes in semi-darkness" sings Ezra Furman on her latest album ‘All of us flames’, seemingly capturing the atmosphere of this show. With the scene set, the band launched into the throbbing opening track of the new album ‘Train Comes Through’; somewhat fitting for the Roundhouse, once part of a large Camden railyard. As a fairly recent convert to Ezra, I was hoping for plenty of her more recent songs. I wasn't disappointed. Personally, ‘All of us flames’ album feels akin to rebellious collections of songs such as Dylan's ‘Times They Are A-Changing’ and Lou Reed's ‘New York’. Those records in some ways define the feelings of a generation or three. Ezra is more than just a singer from a more gender fluid, accepting generation. Her songs reflect a need for change that is building up a groundswell all across the nations among the disillusioned young. That opener is a wish and a promise that the downtrodden will turn the tables on their oppressors’ think Brecht's ‘Pirate Jenny’ or Dylan's ‘When The Ship Comes In’. Furman and her band play seven songs from the latest album, expresses Ezra's views and feelings in confident certainties, though not without a few tears. ‘Lilac and Black’ will surely become a Trans anthem. ‘Dressed in black’ is a paean to 60's girls bands, particularly the Shangri-La's, who have a song of the same name. "I've always seen girl groups like the Shangri-La's as girl gangs," said Ezra from the stage. In spite of the almost at-capacity venue, Ezra seemed to play down the big landmark, London gig, seeking rapport with "the 30 or so people that first saw me here.” She joined them in the pit near the end of the concert. Another highlight in an evening full of excellent songs well played was ‘Transition From Nowhere to Nowhere’, with its chilling line: "No one cares if you're dying 'til you're dead.” The heart rending ‘I wanna be your girlfriend’ from the same album, ‘Twelve Nudes’ also made its presence felt. The ‘Transangelic Exodus’ album was well represented too; another highlight of the night was the infectious ‘Love you so bad’, which had the crowd rocking. "Like you're not all afraid of failure and death like me? Ambition leads nowhere" said Ezra from the stage, but tonight was a complete success. The final encore number was, in Ezra’s words: "A protection spell from Saint Patti Smith and Bruce Springsteen", ‘Because the night’. Ezra Furman is a diligent student of songwriting greats. and this concert proved that her works are up there with the best of them. Photos by Amanda J Window

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Ezra Furman - Roundhouse, London, 17/11/2022

Ezra Furman - Roundhouse, London, 17/11/2022

Ezra Furman - Roundhouse, London, 17/11/2022

Ezra Furman - Roundhouse, London, 17/11/2022

Ezra Furman - Roundhouse, London, 17/11/2022

Ezra Furman - Roundhouse, London, 17/11/2022

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