Cortney Dixon. Gosforth Civic Theatre. 29.1.20

You have to empathise with any artist who’d started to blossom just as Covid hit; partly because it must have been a true impact to their sense of identity, and partly because there’s a real chance that the enforced locked down knocked them off course and stalled their momentum.

Momentum, a word rarely used to describe pop music, but an essential ingredient to the development of any skill – particularly a musical one.

Imagine if the Pistols had been told to down tools for 12 months in ‘77, or the Kings of Leon had been forced off the road for the year in between ‘Youth and Young Manhood’ and ‘Aha Shake Heartbreak’, or Oasis hadn’t been able to tour Definitely Maybe…   There’s countless examples of musical acts who’s legacy hinges on a 6-12 month period where everything kicks into place bringing an exponential surge in talent, and it is worrying to think of how many great, or at least good, acts we’ll lose because of covid grinding excitement out of them. 

Billed by BBC Introducing as one of their Top Ten Tips for 2020s, it would have been easy for Cortney Dixon to pack it all in, or lose her excitement, given the palaver of the past 12 months; yet on tonight’s form there’s small chance of that.

Coming out swinging for the first GCT Live gig of 2021 (‘posh Gosforth’ as Dixon declares it), Dixon delivers a wonderful, 2-person, set as she moves through songs from her back catalogue and recent ‘Won’t Feel Like This Forever’ EP.

Delicate in places (“Nothing ever changes’ and ‘Telly’) and full on poptastic in others (the show stealing “Bang Bang Honey Honey”) Dixon’s set showcases her expansive style, haunting vocals, and ability to craft lovely pop moments with shining melodies. 

A natural performer, Dixon steals the stripped down show, aided by strong CGV production, audio and a high-res,two camera, beam back.

45 minutes later and it’s all over; Dixon appearing from hibernation looking and sounding relaxed, confident and in fine form. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that lockdown stay away from her momentum.

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