Julia Jacklin Sells Out The Urban Lounge For ‘Pre Pleasure’ Debut


Avery Greig

Julia Jacklin Sold Out Sign above The Urban Lounge (Photo by Avery Greig | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Avery Greig, Arts Editor


Australian indie-folk singer-songwriter Julia Jacklin graced the stage of Salt Lake’s Urban Lounge on Sept. 27, selling out the venue while on her United States tour for her new album “Pre Pleasure.”

Get Kirbed

“Please don’t kiss while I’m playing this song, I’m not kidding,” said opener Katie Kirby, sparking a laugh from the crowd.

The Texas-based singer-songwriter may have honored the audience with her humor, yet she tells no lies. Kirby’s angelic alto undoubtedly stands out within the indie-folk scene today, completely silencing the Urban Lounge’s packed house, yet her linguistic lyrics are unmatched and glue audiences into tender embraces. Unfolding stories in light bravado and acoustic guitar tell tales of lesbian intimacy in an unfiltered way that is hard to find in today’s global discography.

Katie Kirby (Courtesy Katie Kirby Official YouTube)

As Kirby departed with a wave, an eager crowd awaiting Jacklin’s emergence began to rumble as stage lights dimmed in preparation.

Slaying the Stage

Rather than Jacklin’s iconic sound, a sudden wave of melodic flute filled the venue that could only be “My Heart Will Go On” from music legend Celine Dion. A confused crowd began to sing the ballad in unison before Jacklin emerged from the stage’s mist like a scarlet dress-suit clad birth of Venus. The words “Julia’s Guitar” monikered on the yellow fender strapped across her shoulder and her strawberry blond curls framing her grinning face.

Jacklin sings with her eyes closed and controls the audience without trying. She exudes an air of confidence, smiling as she belts high notes and laughing during songs. She would often turn her back to the audience to sing to her band members or urge them to strum a set of wind chimes located on stage. At one point, Jacklin requested a case of water to be brought from backstage and distributed within the crowd, a small gesture that reveals the intimacy of her sets. 

Pre Pleasure Post Release

“I don’t remember a single thing from my past, not a single thing, I live day to day,” said Jacklin, whose vocals beg no auto tune and demand one’s undivided attention. I found myself completely immersed in her sound, living in the moment as she had sermoned, lost in the vibrations of her sophomore album “Pre Pleasure.” 

Julia Jacklin Live at The Urban Lounge on Sept. 27. (Photo by Avery Greig | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

Released on Aug. 26, “Pre Pleasure” sends Jacklin’s indie-folk discography into a new dimension and sent the Urban Lounge into full orbit. Track “Love, Try Not To Let Go” was an audience favorite. It’s chorus, “Love, love is all that I want now” repeating over like a mantra and a steady drum beat reverberating in one’s ribcage. “Lydia Wears A Cross,” which kicks off the album, is a sedate, deeply emotional tune that urged the crowd to ripple like slow waves while album favorite “I Was Neon” takes a stark turn into angsty alternative and had the Urban Lounge screaming along.

While “Pre Pleasure” sports this vast spectrum of sounds, the album is distinguishably one piece. Connected by Jacklin’s profound lyricism on the intricacies of relationships, nostalgia and according to Pitchfork, “seeking a balance between thinking about life and actually living it.”

Jacklin ended the evening with her hit “Pressure to Party” from her first album “Crushing,” a melancholy tune about moving on set to an upbeat melody — the perfect send-off from the perfect evening. 


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