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[GIG REVIEW] Flawless Ellie Goulding Kicks Off U.S. Tour in Atlanta


 Artist: Ellie Goulding
 Band: Chris Ketley (keys/bass), Maxwell Cooke (keys), Joe Clegg (drums)
 Seen at: Center Stage (Atlanta, GA)
 Date: July 23, 2011

British superstar Ellie Goulding kicked off her second U.S. tour in Atlanta, GA on Saturday evening where she left pop enthusiasts from all over the Southeast "Starry Eyed" with her thrilling and electrifying performance. 

Walking into a jam-packed concert venue, glow sticks and cell phone cameras lit up the air as Goulding and her three band mates took the stage for her very first Atlanta performance. While the flashing lights and gold curtains filled the dark with luminous colors, nothing shined brighter than Ellie herself from start to finish.

Wearing a sassy, all black outfit with cut red sleeves hanging down, Goulding wasted no time getting her fans excited and opened with one of many fan favorites "Under The Sheets." Playing her personal snare drum and cymbal for extra effects, the crowd had their hands waving enthusiastically to give the singer a very warm welcome to the South.

Goulding felt the audience welcome and made a strong connection with the crowd, playing songs like  "This Love," "Every Time You Go" and "Human" with fans across the venue singing along. With no play on radio in America (yet) and relying mostly on the support of blogs and her stint on Saturday Night Live, it was impressive and somewhat surreal to see that so many people knew Goulding's songs by heart.

Although her gyrating hips and her trademark high notes were enough to send the crowd into a frenzy, during her sets of "Human" and "Guns and Horses," the lights dimmed as Goulding's band left the stage leaving her for an intimate acoustic session with her fans.

While Goulding's admirers had shown nothing but excitement and love throughout the whole concert, it was during her breathtaking performances of "The End" and "Wish I Stayed" that fans appeared to be most attentive.

The most emotional performance may have been her last acoustic song when she dedicated her chart-topping and pitch-perfect Elton John cover "Your Song" to the late Amy Winehouse. "She was very special and an inspiration to me," Goulding told the crowd. A truly touching moment.

Picking the tempo back up, the band returned on stage for some lively sets including the bittersweet "The Writer." The song received a loud crowd response that added both power and warmth to her performance.

None of this was more evident then during Goulding's performance of "Salt Skin," which the singer broke down with an impressive percussion instrumental.

Goulding turned it up a few notches by mixing in the propulsive vocal track of Kanye West's "Power" that stirred the crowd. Ending her set with her latest single "Lights," Goulding and her band left the stage with the crowd loudly cheering for more, more, more.

As the crowd exploded chanting "Ellie Ellie Ellie," the glowing singer returned to the stage and fed the hungry pop fans what they needed with an intense performance of "Your Biggest Mistake." With the night winding down, Ellie performed her last encore song "Starry Eyed" that garnered her a huge response and was a perfect ending to a flawless show. 

While everyone sung and dance in the aisles, the atmosphere was filled with neon glow sticks, smiling faces and nothing but love for the UK singer who is only moments away from a true breakthrough in America. (Ellie Goulding photo via Laura/Flickr. Article contributed by ArjanWrites.com writer Jason Weintraub. You can reach Jason at @jrthewriter on Twitter.)

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July 25, 2011 | Permalink