The Space Lady

Posted on 21/04/2014

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Monday 11th April

20140421-230729.jpgCosmic love haze is not a phrase I usually start AND end a review with but I thought I would make an exception for The Space Lady.

It was only about 3 months ago that I first heard her Greatest Hits. A charming mixture of covers and catchy originals with kitsch Casio beats and hauntingly beautiful vocals, ethereal but never wishy washy, soaked in reverb, yet not a word or meaning lost.

If like me, you are not usually a follower of ‘outsider music’ or haven’t grown up in San Francisco, where she honed her art busking, then you may not of come across her before. It was the release of the compilation album “Songs in the Key of Z, Vol. 2:  The Curious Universe of Outsider Music” that catapulted her cosmic vibes into the muso stratosphere. What I like most about her music though is that it sits just inside the outside and just outside the inside, purely because far from being a challenging listen, it is so melodic. Dreamy, soothing, upbeat and did I say dreamy?

It was a bit like a being in a dream at her gig in Clwb. For a start it was a Monday night, always confusing! Secondly, all the way through the crowd were hushed and attentive and smiling amongst the tin foil stars that decorated the stage. Thirdly, The Space Lady was in Clwb, in Cardiff! She has never even been to the UK before! And she was wearing THE hat! It felt pretty special, the crowd knew it and they hung on her every word.

She treated us to a selection of her finest! I was pleased to hear everything she had to offer from ‘Humdinger’ to ‘Major Tom’, ‘Ballroom Blitz’ to ‘ Ghost Riders In The Sky’ but my absolute favourites were ‘Synthesize Me’ and ‘I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night)’, ooh and when she added her own barks and howls to ‘Born To Be Wild’,

‘I’m having fun!’

So were we!

Before this gig I was under the illusion that I never needed to hear the song ‘Imagine’ ever again but somehow she even made that seem like it was the first time I’d actually heard it.

After the encore people broke away from her cosmic stage spell and went to buy merch. Newly born fans clutched her CD to their hearts triumphantly, ‘I couldn’t not hear that voice again!’

I wanted mine signing and hovered around nervously with a sharpie.

She obliged. I squeezed her arm and said thank you.

Manfriend admired the black marks,
“Hasn’t she got beautiful handwriting?”
“Yes …
… and she drew a planet”,
I said dreamily, in a cosmic love haze.

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You can listen to The Story of The Space Lady here:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p01ws9q2

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