Carrie Underwood dazzled the Palais Theatre with an amazing vocal performance that shows why she is one of the most in demand country divas in the world today.
Taking to the stage with a full band, and in front of a crowd of mainly women, the odd one sporting a cowboy hat, the young starlet forces woo’s the moment she steps on stage. She struts front and centre donning a sparkly attire of a black jacket and shorts, as well as some ridiculously sized heels for someone who is about to spend the best part of two hours on her feet. Talk about suffering for your art.
She opens with the single 'Good Girl' from her fourth album, and it’s immediately clear what all the fuss is about. There is always a certain stigma about reality TV show musicians, but appears Miss Underwood has the voice and the stage presence to be a real musical force, not that she isn’t already.
The crowd was subdued for the most part. The odd crazed female would fan would get up sporadically and do a little bit of a “Ashleigh Simpson SNL” type jig while their boyfriends quietly facepalmed in the next seat. Underwood certainly commanded the crowd the best she could within the somewhat awkward structure of the Palais and it’s “can we stand or is that naughty?” veneer. Doing her best to move her body as she belted out tune after tune of country pop.
While she is a pleasure to watch as she interacts with the crowd during her set, it’s also her impressive band that catches the eye. Eight members stand behind her, nearly all of them multi-instrumental, and at some point or another most members get their chance to become the focal point of the stage with Underwood.
While she might be a little country, she is also a little bit rock and roll, with songs like ‘last name’ packing a punch amongst her softer ballads. She let’s the mood settle into a homely acoustic set as her and her band perform from stools for most of the second half. Everyone swoons at the intimacy, the audience hanging onto every word of her country croon.
The highlights of the set come close together, in the form of a cracking cover of INXS’s ‘Never Tear Us Apart’ and ravishing performance of ‘Jesus Take The Wheel’ before Underwood and band disappear for a naïve amount of time to build little anticipation for the encore. Not that it disappointed. Finishing up with the aptly titled ‘Blown Away’ as she blew the audience away, as she had all evening.