October 13, 2022
Written by Jason Reed
Morcheeba graced the stage at the Fremont Theater in San Luis Obispo on October 13th in front of a packed house in support of their 10th studio album “Blackest Blue.” And “grace” was probably the most operative word of the evening, as vocalist Skye Edwards exuded her own unique brand of sensual grace and stage presence, her voice serving as a comforting panacea. Like their latest album, the concert provided a refreshing jolt of inspired energy, with every note lovingly overflowing with intentionality and purpose.
For those of us lucky enough to have experienced their music during their initial ascension in the mid 1990’s, there is no denying that the band sounds just as vibrant, alive and perhaps even more relevant now than during that era. Back then the band was widely considered to be part of a larger trip-hop aesthetic movement, along with other luminaries such as Portishead and Massive Attack. Fast forward nearly three decades and we are blessed to have one of these legendary bands still putting out fresh, new studio material that will likely be considered equally memorable decades from now. Indeed, there is a certain timelessness to Morcheeba’s style that will grant them a much deserved degree of musical immortality.
The band performed hit after hit, with their lush, layered sounds reverberating through the concert venue like a refreshing, tranquil cool breeze on a humid day. It was honestly one of the best sounding shows we’ve seen in a while. Kudos to the band as well as the sound technicians at the Fremont for making the show feel like a well curated gift to the audience.
Guitarist Ross Godfrey was in peak form, showcasing his signature psychedelia sound throughout the night. Stating that he was excited to visit the City of San Luis Obispo after hearing it described as “one of the happiest cities in America” (as mentioned many years ago on the Oprah TV show). Ross took full advantage of this opportunity to maximize his own happy experience (by his own candid admission) through a balanced dose of beer, psilocybin and THC gummies. His smile and total immersion into the music throughout the night made us have to agree with his particular pharmacological choices. He was in the zone creatively and San Luis Obispo was certainly more “happy” for having had the band visit and add to its pre-existing happiness quotient.
Highlights of the night included the compelling call and response flow of their new track “Oh Oh Yeah,” “Enjoy The Ride” (which Ross revealed was inspired by an acquaintance’s harrowing experience of getting locked into LA’s Griffith Park after hours), their classic slow-tempo jam “Part Of The Process” and their unique rendition of the Rolling Stones’ “Gimme Shelter.” Also, in what appears to be a new and welcome trend in concerts we’ve seen recently (as we witnessed with UK band Heaven 17 this last month) the band performed an inspired cover version of “Let’s Dance” by David Bowie.
For more information about the band and to purchase a copy of their new album check out www.morcheeba.uk.