It’s been quite the year for Jade Bird. The unmistakeable noise of hype has surrounded the diminutive singer from Hexham all through 2018, boosted initially by word-of-mouth before reaching fever pitch after an appearance on Later With Jools and a multitude of festival slots. Packing a Brighton venue for the second time in a year, The Haunt was a sizeable upgrade tonight from March’s Green Door Store show. With her debut album wrapped only days before and being prepped for a 2019 release, tonight was a chance to prove that the initial excitement is now capable of bearing real fruit.
Some shows give you the sensation of watching a career burst into life but tonight felt less like an arrival and more like the discovery of a fully formed star. Jade Bird, from Hexham in Northumberland, may only be 20 but she has a timeless and ageless quality about her, enabling her to hold the crowd at the Green Door Store in the palm of her hand throughout the entirety of her first ever Brighton gig. BBC Music have already recognised the potential with their addition of Bird to their Music Sound of, 2018 longlist, and she has been generating a large buzz on the other side of the Atlantic where they obviously lap up country-tinged singers. With all that in mind, it was no surprise that this show sold so well with many curious onlookers amongst the already converted.