Not far away from his thirtieth year in the music business, Seal has recently taken a calculated risk in recording an album of famously covered jazz standards.
And the true test of any performer, especially a singer, is how they deliver their talent in concert without any studio “sweetening”.
Seal cooly passed this live test.
He effortlessly smoothed through his soulful, smokey vocal gears in suave style during the first half of a show – dedicated to choice cuts from his recent Seal Standards album.
In fact, the manner in which he suspended himself in slow motion movements, as though in cryogenic ecstasy, during the many superb horn section solo’s transfixed tonight’s sold out Palladium audience.
A very impressive and confident vocal take on the challenging It Was A Very Good Year and a mesmerising I Put A Spell On You held an aura of magic over his enthralled fans.
The magic continued through the second half of the show as he concentrated on his own hits and cool covers by his favourite artists.
In particular, an ambient take on Steve Miller’s Fly Like An Eagle displayed his powerful, ethereal vocal bathed in beautiful echo.
Then an inspired and uplifting version of Curtis Mayfield’s Move On Up, with a blistering barrage of brass, raised the punters from their seats to rumble the floor.
But the true show-stopping moment arrived with the banging burst of synth and double drums on Killer.
Balancing himself on the orchestra pit rail, supported by the front row fans, Seal belted out an impassioned cry on this original Adamski co-hit song that heralded his arrival all those years ago.
A pulsating almost feral Life On The Dancefloor sealed the deal as he prowled around the front stalls like a soulful pied piper.
Finally, a wild and frenzied final encore of Crazy was met with a raucous seal of approval as Seal’s dedicated fans lapped up tonight’s stellar performance.