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Review: Marina & The Diamonds

PUBLISHED: 13:34 15 February 2010 | UPDATED: 15:59 09 December 2010

Photos: Steve Hunt

Photos: Steve Hunt

Simon Parkin

After including her in numerous 2010 ones-to-watch lists, the tastemakers seem to have pencilled in Marina Diamandis - aka Marina & The Diamonds - to follow in the footsteps of Florence Welch and her machine.

Simon Parkin

Norwich Arts Centre

After including her in numerous 2010 ones-to-watch lists, the tastemakers seem to have pencilled in Marina Diamandis - aka Marina & The Diamonds - to follow in the footsteps of Florence Welch and her machine.

Her profile - near saturation coverage and airplay, has consequently rocketed in recent weeks - ahead of the release of her debut album, The Family Jewels.

But if she is feeling the weight of expectation it's not showing, at least if this breezy performance is anything to go.

Although the five-piece band, including two keyboardists, bassist and drummer, are in theory a group, there is only one start of this show.

The half-Greek, half-Welsh singer has all eyes upon her and all ears tuned to her unique voice.

It's a remarkable instrument in itself: part-Lily Allen, part Kate Bush wail, though when she takes off in banshee-like screaming it's somewhere else entirely.

The voice fronts a mix of eccentric pop-rock tunes that range from new wave electro to piano torch-song. But almost all pull off the neat trick of being both intelligent and irresistibly infectious.

She is already a performer seemingly at home on stage, a charismatic friendly presence able to merge melodramatic moments with a down-to-earth charm.

She was comfortable swamping banter with a front row of teenage girls and accepting a Valentine's Day rose.

The truncated set last barely 45-minutes, but in that time she show enough art-pop glitter to suggest 2010 really might be hers for the taking.

Get your tickets for May 18's Waterfront show now.

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