FROM the moment Beth Hart walked on stage at the Brook, sat down at the keyboards and delivered a haunting and heartfelt solo rendition of LA Song, it was evident that she already had captivated the sell-out crowed.

With an amazingly strong and powerful voice, Hart’s delivery strikes right at the core of the human sprit. As the other members of her band joined her on stage, the energy levels shot up several gears, as they tore into Delicious.

With elements of Janis Joplin and a heavy dose of Eta James, Hart’s voice is exceptional, and at times filled the intimate venue to a stadium sized arena. Guitarist Jon Nichols hit note after note spot on, allowing Harts voice to soar, particularly on Well, Well and Something’s got a Hold on Me. With a solid backbeat, supplied courtesy of drummer Todd Wolf and bass player Tom Lilly, the band was firing on all cylinders, with the momentum of the night growing with each song.

Showcasing several tracks from her recent collaboration album with Joe Bonamassa, including Sinner’s Prayer and her exceptional cover version of Tom Wait’s Chocolate Jesus, Hart displayed the sheer range of her voice, but it was when returned to the keyboards and played her own compositions, that her talent as a singer/songwriter shone trough.

Leave the Light On and Under Water were the highlights, of a set that could not be faulted. Hart and her band were spurred on by the enthusiastic crowd, with Hart herself bouncing around on stage with all the energy of a young child.

Returning for the encores, the energy radiating from the stage did not abate, as the band ended the evening with stellar performances of Ugliest House and My California. As Hart and her band finally left the stage, there was no doubting that everyone in the Brook had just witnessed the gig of the year.