Elle King at C2C Festival 2024

Elle King Stuns on Live Return at C2C Festival 2024 in London

March 11, 2024 11:05 pm GMT
Last Edited March 19, 2024 3:49 pm GMT

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Photography by Kendall Wilson

Elle King made a triumphant return to London on Sunday night as she took to the main stage on the final night of C2C Festival 2024.

A little over a month after a chaotic performance at the Grand Ole Opry, where she confessed to being "hammered" and forgot her words whilst on stage for a Dolly Parton birthday tribute, all eyes were on King for a temperature check on how thoroughly she'd dried out since.

The crowd needn't have worried. Looking like a rock star who’d fled a runway at Paris Fashion Week via a sci-fi convention, in black leather, slicked-back hair and Matrix-era sunglasses, King came alive in a professional set as she switched deftly between her banjo, guitar and tambourine.

The tracklist delivered juicy treats for fans both old and new in a performance that spanned the range of her discography, right from her breakout hit ‘Ex’s and Oh's’ - "an oldie but goodie" she winked to the crowd - to tracks like the rocking ‘Tulsa’, the bluesy ‘Love Go By’ and the sweet ‘Lucky’, from latest album Come Get Your Wife. The crowd swayed woozily as King delivered her heartfelt cover of Tyler Childers' ‘Jersey Giant’, and rose to their feet as Lily Rose joined King on stage for a rousing rendition of Miranda Lambert duet ‘Drunk And I Don't Wanna Go Home’.

There's something indefinable about Elle King. Not just in genre, where her rag tag mix of country, blues and rock brings Tom Petty to mind, a feel she cemented with a cover of Stevie Nicks and Petty's 'Stop Draggin' My Heart Around'. There's also something in her very voice; an accent that carries its California beginnings, Ohio roots, and years spent working in the country music industry, stickily melded together with a molasses thickness and coated in a rock n roll fuzz. The lack of coherence is to no detriment; it's part of the refusal to be backed neatly into a box that has made King's career.

If the detractors were waiting for the Elle King apology they’ve demanded then they'll be waiting a long time. King spoke seldom throughout the performance, punctuating her set only with staccato proclamations of love for C2C and country music. Perhaps there's no need for long interludes or explanations when King's own songs are the perfect answer and mission statement in themselves.

"What do you want from me? I'm not America's Sweetheart" she sings defiantly. She may not be America's sweetheart, but, for one night only, London made room in its heart for just one more.

Elle King - Setlist

Taken from Elle's Set at Luck Reunion in Luck, Texas on Thursday, March 14 2024.

  1. Out Yonder
  2. Chain Smokin’ Hard Drinkin’ Woman
  3. Tulsa
  4. Jersey Giant (Tyler Childers cover)
  5. America’s Sweetheart
  6. Worth A Shot
  7. Lucky
  8. Ex’s & Oh’s
  9. Stop Draggin My Heart Around (Tom Petty & Stevie Knicks cover)
  10. Love Go By
  11. Drunk and I Don’t Wanna Go Home
  12. Little Bit of Lovin'

For more on C2C Festival 2024, see below:

Written by Holly Smith
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