Arts and Culture

Paloma Faith at the Bridgewater Hall Review: A powerful message for women

Paloma Faith took Manchester by storm last week after performing two sold-out shows at the Bridgewater Hall with one very important message.

Mancunian Matters attended the show on Friday which celebrates the release of Paloma’s sixth studio album, The Glorification of Sadness – the first time in her career the artist has executive-produced a record.

Performing with no support act and arriving perfectly on time set the audience up for a night of appreciation – not just from the fans for a faultless performance but from Paloma herself for the admiration she receives from her supporters.

The first half of the concert was mostly dedicated to the new album described by the artist as “More than an album about relationships. The celebration of finding your way back after leaving a long term relationship, being empowered even in your failures and taking responsibility for your own happiness.”

This is a message that shone through every interaction as the night continued with Paloma sharing her message of female empowerment and expressions of gratitude for the unseen hard work mothers, partners and all women do. 

An energetic performance included several outfit changes – most notably the Sexy Ladies Under Tremendous Stress ’S.L.U.T.S.’ crop top was a real crowd-pleaser.

Sexy Ladies Under Tremendous Stress ’S.L.U.T.S.’

Paloma Faith later posted on Instagram describing the outfit choice as “Reclaiming a sexist word”, in keeping with her honest and uplifting speeches to the Manchester crowd about independence and finding one’s self after divorce or relationship breakdown.

Her hit single How You Leave a Man was a perfect rallying cry for any audience members who felt the message of bad men and bad relationships were particularly poignant and this song continued a pitch-perfect experience.

Classic Paloma tunes Picking Up the Pieces, Upside Down and Crybaby had the audience on their feet and Say My Name saw Paloma join the crowd on the concert floor.

Climbing over chairs and reaching out to hold fans Paloma made every effort to make each audience member feel something – connected.

This wasn’t just another gig nor another musical turn – it was in fact a love letter for every woman or every fan who needed something uplifting and empowering and that is exactly what they got.

From witty jokes and audience participation to a strong band and accompanying singers to a very powerful and personal performance – this show had it all.

The closing record Only Love Can Hurt Like This – a song that is a decade old proves that Paloma’s love affair with herself and her fans is not only strong but it’s built to last.

Image credit @mcrjourno and Chuff Media

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