Live Review: Leon Bridges – Academy, Manchester

On Wednesday night, Manchester audiences were treated to a night of class and sophistication of the hippest order. As Leon Bridges graced the stage of Manchester’s Academy, his crowd was transported right back to a scene from New Orleans in the 1950s. The lighting, the dancing, the bowler hats – the whole performance was frankly flawless

Slick and smooth, Leon Bridges is a born show man; his live vocals are immaculate, his stage presence is second to none and his five piece band are talented beyond belief. Opening the show with hits If It Feels Good Then It Must Be and Bad Bad News, the crowd were immediately engrossed in the splendour and soulfulness of Bridges’ performance. Bridges played a mix of tracks from both new album Good Thing and Coming Home – highlights included mega ballads River and Beyond, where the mood in the crowd quickly descended into a calming, magical moment. The vibe was then turned up a notch when the band teased the crowd with the opening bars of Oasis’ Champagne Supernova, before launching into a high energy rendition of Mississippi Kisses

Leon Bridges is a class act. As good a singer as he is, as a dancer he is a force to be reckoned with on stage. His “style and grace” are effortless, his showmanship impeccable. One to watch, one to enjoy

Jessica Newsome