GIRLI is ‘More Than A Friend’ to her fans

Posted On 17 Nov 2021 at 5:47 pm

GIRLI live at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

GIRLI + JULY JONES – THE HOPE & RUIN, BRIGHTON 16.11.21

Back in 2019 our Editor wrote a review of London-born singer-songwriter and rising star GIRLI’s gig at the then-Haunt (now CHALK) in which he confessed that GIRLI was his guilty pleasure. Well that now makes two of us, although, for me, there’s not really any guilt, just pleasure.

The crowd at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

The entry requirement tonight at The Hope & Ruin is for proof of a double vaccination or negative lateral flow test is a reminder that we are very much still in the middle of a pandemic, and we are in a very different place from where we were two years ago. But, at least for tonight the COVID-woes ebb away as soon as we step into the venue, and are at once immersed in a warm, fuzzy blanket of euphoria created by one of the friendliest and enthusiastic audiences you are likely to meet.

GIRLI live at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

They are a protective bunch as well, I discover, as several of the audience self-appoint themselves as my camera guards for the night, helping to hopefully ensure that I get the photographs I need to do tonight justice.

GIRLI live at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

Both artists proudly explain that this is a tour put together by women, with GIRLI herself taking an active role, even down to the mundane tasks such as travel timings and finding accommodation for each night of the tour. You can see that this is a tightly knit group who have worked hard together to make the tour a success. Talking to members of the audience before the show, many of whom have been at several of the earlier gigs, confirms that it’s paid off, with each night going from strength to strength.

GIRLI and her audience at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

The crowd are in an absolute frenzy as soon as the first note is struck with squeals of delight and “I Love you” being heard between each and every song of the night.

July Jones live at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

July Jones provides support for tonight and what can I say? An absolute powerhouse both vocally and visually. July explains to the audience who hang on every word, that her music is about pushing at boundaries.

July Jones live at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

July is from eastern Europe and recounts to the audience of how she lost her job performing in pubs, because they didn’t think she could talk properly. But that myth is dispelled tonight as she carefully introduces each song as if they were her own fledglings. ‘Air’, her only ballad, (and next single) is about anxiety. The lyrics may be simple but it’s beautiful and raw, at once striking a note with everyone in the audience.

July Jones live at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

Find out more about July Jones by visiting www.julyjones.com

GIRLI live at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

GIRLI aka Milly Toomey has matured in the last two years, becoming a formidable force both vocally and in her stage presence. However, she approaches the stage quietly through the audience with an understated “excuse me” to part the crowd.

On stage with GIRLI live at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

This is a woman who really can sing and hold the audience in the palm of her hand from start to finish. GIRLI is not afraid to expose her vulnerabilities and emotions, at once connecting with her audience. Highlights from tonight include songs from the new EP such as ‘I Don’t Like Myself’ (upbeat and high energy pop it may be, but it’s far from bubble-gum, as the lyrics are a dark take on everyday experiences) as well as ‘Dysmorphia’, ‘Hot Mess’ and the perfect ending, ‘More Than A Friend’.

GIRLI live at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

GIRLI’s performance is about empowerment – and looking around at the audience you can easily see how she has inspired so many there to be comfortable in their own skins.

GIRLI live at The Hope & Ruin, Brighton 16.11.21 (pic Sara-Louise Bowrey) (click pic to enlarge)

GIRLI’s setlist:
‘Day Month Second’ (from 2019 ‘Odd One Out’ album)
‘Has Been’ (from 2021 ‘Ex Talk’ EP)
‘Deal With It’ (from 2019 ‘Odd One Out’ album)
‘I Don’t Like Myself’ (from 2021 ‘Damsel In Distress’ EP)
‘Dysmorphia’ (from 2021 ‘Damsel In Distress’ EP)
‘Letter To My Ex’ (from 2021 ‘Ex Talk’ EP)
‘Not That Girl’ (from 2017 ‘Feel OK’ EP)
‘Girl I Met On The Internet’ (from 2016 ‘Girl I Met On The Internet’ single)
‘Ruthless’ (from 2021 ‘Damsel In Distress’ EP)
‘Friday Night Big Screen’ (from 2019 ‘Odd One Out’ album)
‘Mr 10pm Bedtime’ (from 2017 ‘Hot Mess’ EP)
‘Young’ (from 2019 ‘Odd One Out’ album)
‘Hot Mess’ (from 2019 ‘Odd One Out’ album)
(encore)
‘Pink’ (from 2019 ‘Odd One Out’ album)
‘More Than A Friend’ (from 2021 ‘Damsel In Distress’ EP)

Find out more about GIRLI:

Website / Spotify / Facebook / Instagram / TikTok

Gig flyer

Setlists: GIRLI on left and July Jones on right

Event times  (pic Mike Burnell)

 

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