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Marika Hackman debuts string duo at sold-out Bush Hall show

01 April 2015, 09:15 | Written by Charlotte Krol

Twenty-three-year old Marika Hackman treated a packed Bush Hall audience to songs from her debut album, We Slept At Last, embellishing her at once timeless and innovative folk melodies with moving string arrangements.

She might only be five gigs into her biggest UK headline tour to date, but Hackman played like a worn-in troubadour; the audience at her complete command. Tonight was always going to be about songs from her debut album released this year, We Slept At Last (counting "Animal Fear", "Before I Sleep", "Ophelia" and "Skin" among them) but she even managed to dip into her back catalogue for songs like "Cinnamon".

Despite playing with a newly-formed live band to audiences in December, this was the first time Hackman had just herself and two string players onstage. The depth of emotion resounding from the instruments only augmented Hackman's ability to stir both heart and mind. Her gratitude was obvious; she urged us to applaud them as much as herself.

"I wasn't expecting this", she said sheepishly upon learning an encore had been called, and after some hesitation played old crowd favourite "Cinnamon" with vigour. With a debut album-heavy set it seems Hackman is trying to move away from her older EP material. But with having such a timeless handle on songwriting, these are earthy and visceral songs that can't easily be forgotten.


Retina TV
Deep Green
Next Year
Itchy Teeth
Monday Avo
Animal Fear
Claude’s Girl
You Come Down
Before I Sleep
Let Me In

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