The Living Room Acoustic Night

HOLLY LOVERING and ABI LANDER enjoy an acoustic evening with scatter cushions and tiramisu.

abi lander acoustic acoustic evening bistro Cambridge cb2 gentle guitar holly lovering Music relaxed the living room

CB2 Bistro, Friday 7th October,  £4/£3

[rating: 4/5]

An Italian bistro is an unusual setting for a gig. It’s not often you enter a music venue, only to be greeted by a sea of happy couples sharing tiramisu by candlelight. But, the basement of CB2 was actually pretty good, and it suited the intimate and chilled music on offer.

We didn’t plan to spend our evening sitting on scatter cushions and carpets that looked like they belonged in an elderly people’s home, but the informality of this venue only added to its charm. What’s more, the crowd was mostly made up of regulars, which only increased its friendly vibe.

Georgia Strand

Kate Vowles was a surprise star, although her resemblance to my primary school teacher was striking (and did nothing to dispel comparisons to story-time). Her haunting country vocals filled the tiny, but packed, venue just brilliantly.

But the standout performance of the evening was Georgia Strand, who looks and sounds like the love-child of Adele and Kate Nash. She seamlessly alternated between emotional power-ballads and feel-good tunes, and ended her set with a song that shouldn’t have worked, but really did: a down-tempo, breathy rendition of Dead or Alive’s You Spin Me Round.

By the time Leo Altarelli took to the stage, the heat was having a soporific effect on the crowd and it was increasingly difficult to stay awake. And then we remembered those cushion. Who ever said that napping at a gig wasn’t cool?

Leo Altarelli

Crowd-favourites Emma & The Homemade Robots were a little lost on us. I think this may have been due to the fact that we were the only people in CB2 who didn’t personally know the duo. Nonetheless, they had a unique sound – a fusion of electro and folk – and rounded off the evening well.

The Living Room at CB2 is a welcome escape from Cambridge’s busy centre, and the chilled atmosphere, talented but unsigned musicians and quirky venue combined to make this gig more than just a perfect hangover cure.

Photography by Abi Lander