REVIEW: Paul Carrack, City Hall

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IN nautical terms a carrack was a majestic 15th century sailing ship which ploughed the high seas in search of new lands and treasure.

The good ship Carrack sailed into its home port of Sheffield, for once not coinciding with a Wednesday home game, on the crest of a wave.

Buoyed up by a new album and publicity from a BBC4 TV documentary, Paul Carrack attracted a capacity 2,150 to the City Hall.

He gave us most of the songs from his new album, Good Feeling, kicking off the title track and following up with Nothing Without You before dipping into his back catalogue for Tempted.

His voice is amazing. In fact his live performance of the new album was often better than the CD. For those vocal chords to be producing such Steel City Soul at 61 is almost miraculous.

He knows it. “I suppose we should be grateful,” he said.

Better Than Nothing became an extended jam session with Carrack switching from guitar to keyboards mid song, there was a belting Can You Hear Me and old favourites: Eyes of Blue, Coffee and Living Years among others.

At one stage he knocked off his trademark hat to expose a bald pate. “Cat’s out of the bag now ladies,” he quipped.

But it was hats off to Carrack as the audience was on its feet for the last half hour. They didn’t want to let him go.

He looked as if he’d had a great night: on home turf and Wednesday won away.