Following two weeks packed full of masterclasses in pop, rock, soul, jazz, R&B, ambient electronics and boarding indie, the 56th edition of the legendary Montreux Jazz Festival is finally coming to an end. Following 16 days of unmissable music, some of the biggest names in contemporary music performed on the Montreux stages, including Diana Ross, Björk, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Måneskin, Stormzy, The Smile and Gregory Porter.
Closing the 56th edition of the Montreux Jazz Festival in the Montreux Jazz Lab, is Phoebe Bridgers waiting in the wings. With her music commonly described as “melancholy and dreamy,” Bridgers has quickly risen to the highest echelons of indie fame. Even The Rolling Stones took notice of Bridgers’ incredible talent, having recruited her for their BST Hyde Park show last month. The California native continues to impress with her relatable songwriting, receiving critical acclaim which has led to four Grammy nominations, including “Best New Artist”. The next step in Bridgers’ musical journey has taken her to the west of Switzerland, where the Montreux audience waits patiently for her succumbing, layered indie-pop.
Bridgers is welcomed by the Montreux crowd, raring for her effortlessly relatable quips about contemporary life that are often dotted throughout her set. She comes equipped with an arsenal of hits, beginning with the exquisite breakup anthem ‘Motion Sickness’’ before playing nearly every track from her 2020 release ‘Punisher’ including the cathartic anthem ‘Kyoto’ and the enveloping country-tinged ‘Graceland Too’. Having risen to unexpected fame in the pandemic, Bridger’s has proved her belonging on the world stage and acts as the quenching appetizer for the acts to come.
After being recognized as the “Rising Star” at the British Jazz Awards in 2003, Jamie Cullum’s success has been on an uphill trajectory with nominations at both the BRIT Awards and Grammys. Cullum’s most recent acknowledgement was “Best song musically and lyrically” at the Ivor Novello Awards for his track ‘The Age of Anxiety’, which was partly inspired by his friendship with the late Amy Winehouse.
Ever the innovator, Cullum puts on a dark, magical show in the historic Auditorium Stravinski tonight. Bolstered by a note-perfect band following his every lead, the savant bounds between classic jazz melodies, funky ‘Big-band’ tracks and jivey afrobeat in his token showstopping manner. Cullum continues the set with hits such as “I Get A Kick Out Of You’ and “What A Difference A Day Made’ . However, it is in the finale ‘All At Sea’’ where Cullum truly shines, delivering a career-best performance of his original piano-driven track, eventually fading out to his soft voice refraining “Later on you could spend some time with me, if you want to, all at sea”. Cullum truly commands the spotlight like no other.
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