George Ezra: Arms aloft for a gold rush of brilliant pop
- Credit: Adam Scarborough
His music has been described as 'sunshine-ready pop' and that about summed up George Ezra's celebratory headline gig in a sweltering Finsbury Park.
After weeks of events - and no rain - the park was as scorched as a dust bowl prairie, which felt apt for the self-styled 'Gold Rush Kid' and his country inflected tunes.
The wholesome Hertfordshire singer-songwriter is actually nine parts Gold Rush, one part Milky Bar Kid - appealing to mums, grannies and 10-year-olds is hugely underestimated - and while some might sneer - George doesn't mind at all as he whips off his shades and exhorts the the upturned faces to join in.
Released in June, his third studio album gave him a third UK no 1 and proved he's no novelty act, but a crafter of brilliant pop tunes, with catchy choruses, and often thoughtful lyrics. Soon the crowd were arms aloft for new hits Anyone For You and Green Green Grass - complete with confetti cannons.
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He seems genuinely stoked to be here and wants us all "to have a party," but like a travelling troubadour, he also wants us to know the story behind the songs - from the swooning low tempo Barcelona, to the singalong woo-oos of Budapest - begging the question where next George? A song about Brussels or Birmingham?
There may have been crowd issues at Wireless, but this lot aren't giving anyone trouble. Event security were hi-fiving the kids and super sensitive to the fact that this was a family affair. They allowed our 10-year-olds in their straw hats and glitter make-up onto the barrier steps so they could see their idol safely - and it made their night.
Ezra's voice has a lovely timbre, showcased on slowies like Hold My Girl. But he can also crank up the tempo for the bouncy Paradise, and the brass section came into their own for a joyful samba-esque Blame It On Me.
By the encores everyone's dancing along to whopper hit Shotgun. Cue more confetti, a burst of fireworks, and tramping home through the dusty hot night humming the tunes.