There’s a discernible wave of excitement rippling through the sold out crowd in Omeara tonight. It’s a momentous occasion for Charlotte O’Connor and her fans, both of whom have been waiting almost a decade for this night. Having inked a four-album record deal with Columbia at 18 years old, she was dropped after just one release and it looked unlikely she would ever return to the music industry. Against all odds, Charlotte OC has finally arrived, armed with a stunning new debut record, Careless People.
From the moment she strides onstage her presence has the room utterly transfixed. Sporting an oversized ivory blazer, breakneck heels and chandelier gold earrings, she oozes all the glamour of an 80s diva. As she utters the first cries of opener, ‘Blackout’, we’re reminded that she has the earth-shattering vocals to match. However, the apex of the opener’s steady climb is marred by sound issues and OC has to strain to avoid being swamped by the backing track.
For what the set lacks in sound quality, she makes up for in performance; when she’s not writhing around stage with a crazed look in her eyes, she’s moving like a puppet on strings, embodying every word she sings. As the set deviates away from the tracklisting of Careless People, sound issues are finally resolved and just in time for an acoustic rendition of ‘I Want Your Love’. It’s a chance for OC’s soaring vocals to take centre stage, making it a contender for the highlight of the night. In terms of the sound and set-up, there’s still work to be done but the one element of that night that’s unquestionable is Charlotte OC’s formidable vocal, a sound that was well worth the wait to hear.