Ali Milner @ Backstage Lounge -- 08/13/11

After an early show with the Ruffled Feathers at the Biltmore, I zipped over to Backstage Lounge on Granville Island to see Ali Milner. I had first seen her play a couple songs at the Valentine's Day shindig earlier this year, but hadn't had a chance to see her play a full show since then.

As I arrived, Mark Hildreth was just finishing off his set (I was certain I recognized him, and it turns out he is Joshua in V). He did an okay cover of Cohen's “Hallelujah” at the keyboard, which was his “last” song, but was back for a couple song encore, with a very jazz/pop/soul style over some backtracks from his laptop.

Finally to wrap up the night was Ali Milner, joined by a full band, with a jazz-influenced sound driven by her incredibly smooth and soulful voice. As well, she had a great presence and confidence on stage, with charming banter between songs, and I wouldn't be too surprised if a few people left the room smitten by her.
Highlights of the set were “I Can't Wait Forever” and a sexy cover of Nirvana's "Lithium" -- I always love to see bands play cover songs, to see how they interpret them, and this was a really cool rendition -- as well as the last song, which I didn't catch the name of. With its grooving bass line, it got everyone up and dancing and it was the most energetic song of the set.
But that wasn't quite all, as she was called back out for one more, another cover, this time "I Heard It Through the Grapevine"

A really good set, and an excellent way to wrap up the night of music (though my two shows paled in comparison to someone's four), I am definitely looking forward to seeing Milner again, and hopefully soon.