Zola Jesus @ Rough Trade East 7th September 2010

She may be short but Zola Jesus has a cracking pair of lungs. The reason why I attended this instore was the fact there has been a buzz about her. Having already embarked on a debut European tour Rough Trade East was a nice intimate venue to get up close to this upcoming artist. In fact this was the only UK instore that she performed at. For those who don’t know Zola Jesus is the stage name of American Niki Roza Danilova. At only the age of 21 Zola has a cracking voice. Prior to the evening I had been listening to Stridulum II and it is so easy to listen to. The doors opened at 7.40pm. People then started trickling in. This instore was not as packed that I had originally thought. This was most due to the fact of the tube strike that had been happening for 24 hours. Even I had to walk from Whitechapel to Rough Trade because Aldgate East was closed. Back onto the set Niki was backed by two other people whom were playing the keyboards. The set was only 5 songs there was a 6th but that was cut out for some reason. “Thank You for coming” Niki said before launching into the powerful Night. I Can’t Stand and Sea Talk were the next two songs. Now Zola is not one for staying put for the majority of the songs she walks from side to side on the stage at a fast pace. To be honest I felt like she wanted to be off stage so she could walk through the crowd a la Rachel from Kasms at Rough Trade last year. Everyone was then treated to Poor Animal which appears on the forthcoming Valusia EP which is released later this year. It is a nice song and it makes me look forward to more material from that EP (Sea Talk also features on it) and for some reason she tips a cup of water over her head. Run Me Out was the final song and once over the band left the stage. The 6th song on the set was supposed to be Manifest Destiny but was cut for some reason. Maybe they felt they didn’t want to sing the majority of Stridulum II as only 9 songs feature on it. There was definitely a Gothic vibe and Danilova’s vocals were pitch perfect. All in all I would like to see Zola Jesus again she is a fantastic artist whom I see doing really well.

SET LIST

 Night

I Can’t Stand

Sea Talk

Poor Animal

Run Me Out

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