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Bury Met, 9 March 2007
Apart from a change in the support act and just one song previously unheard, there has been no great change in Juliet Turner's offerings since her last appearance at this venue some 13 months ago.
She hasn't had the momentum of a big UK tour to call upon either.
Even radio airplay has been almost non-existent recently. The odd play on Wogan here and there have been my only JT encounters over the past 12 months.
All this relative inactivity is hardly the best foundation for a successful live show on a cold Friday March evening in the heart of Lancashire.
So we have to chose from, good venue promotional work, word of mouth, the internet, the undying support of the faithful followers or the quality of Juliet Turner and guitarist Brian Grace for filling the Bury Met.
Draw your own conclusions, but the quality element is what drags me out of my armchair.
It's common knowledge that the reason for her musical inertia is that Juliet is studying Speech Therapy at Trinity College, Dublin. Although the studying is probably intense and most of her time is now dedicated to achieving her anticipated qualification, she assured the audience that she does manage to visit the studio now and again and a new album will be forthcoming soon.
As for the content of the gig, the Bury faithful (and any newcomers) were treated to about an hour and a half of her 'old' favourites. Starting with 'Pick A Story' and closing with 'Everything Beautiful Is Burning', the performance was faultless, the banter was friendly, the between-song stories were a-plenty and new.
It was also difficult to imagine that Brian Grace and Juliet had not performed live together as frequently as say, last year. The best example of this natural musical togetherness was particularly noticeable at the closing of '1987' where they were racing along chord for chord and without even a glance to each other, they nailed the finish with perfection.
They returned for the encore, which closed with the much-requested 'Vampire', but the highlight of the evening was that she agreed to sing 'Broken Things'. She sang this song at the Memorial Service for the victims of the Omagh bombing. I don't believe she has ever performed it since. I have only called upon this song a couple of times since then during my own personal traumas, such is the gravity of this beautiful song.
Thank you Juliet Turner for the quality music that you have delivered so far, thank you also for promising to return. Good Luck with the studies.
Review by Graham Ashmore
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