Lauren Aquilina @ Archer Street 24th July 2013

Lauren Aquilina is a talent to behold. She is someone I have been championing since the day I met her at the Ellie Goulding Summer Series at Somerset House back in 2011. Since then she has supported well known artists, recorded 2 songs for charity, released début EP Fools and embarked on a sold out headline tour earlier this year. Archer Street which was a bar in Soho was the location of the intimate friends and family gathering for the launch of the Sinners EP. You also had the likes of Kate McGill, Katie Sky and Orla Gartland all there to support their friend Lauren Aquilina at this spectacular launch.

I reached the bar around 6.30pm, went inside then was guided to the downstairs bar where Lauren was sound checking as well as recording Sinners for SB:TV. I knew this set was going to be special the moment I saw the strings section. Doors opened at 7 and Lauren then took to the keyboard about an hour later. “Hello. Thank you for coming. I really didn’t expect this many people to come. My name’s Lauren Aquilina and this is a song about being happy. I hope everyone’s happy even though the drinks are really expensive” Lauren said which then resulted in laughter. What opened up the 7 track set was King which featured on the Fools EP. Now I adore this as the lyrics were rather infectious. The melody is entrancing and you can picture what is actually happening. My favourite part had to be the middle 8 where Aquilina starts off with the line “There’s method in my madness”. Also we are treated to an a capella Aquilina as her microphone just cut out. Lauren gets major plus points as she carried on regardless by just belting out what remained of this tune.

“We’re here to celebrate the release of Sinners EP. Thank you so much if you’ve bought it” Aquilina then mentioned before mentioning it had been an insane week. Sinners had charted at #53 in the official chart mid weeks. It was then onto the first song from the sophomore EP and this being Ugly Truth. This was an up tempo number about a relationship that had to end “All you’ve seen is beauty well this is the Ugly Truth”. I love all the songs which feature on the new EP but this has to be my personal favourite. Ugly Truth had been superbly written and had lyrics which were extremely memorable. “This is a brand new song which I’ve never played before. It’s called Lovers Or Liars. I hope you like it” Lauren then mentioned before giving the audience an exclusive. Lovers Or Liars again deals with a relationship. It is actually slightly emotional as the lyrics depict a relationship with neither wanting to face the actual truth whether if there is a future or not. This tune is definitely one to look out for. My hope is that it features on the next EP or it even finds a way into the set for the forthcoming tour. “So the rule for this song is that every single person in the room has to sing along. I don’t care who you are, you’re going to sing” Lauren then quipped before getting stuck into something from the début EP. This being Fools which was delivered at a fast pace aided by a sublime vocal performance. My favourite part had to be the middle 8. The singable part of this superb song was the line “What if we ruin it all and we love like fools, And all we have we loose”. It was easy to say that Fools is a pleasing number which is highly addictive. “I’m going to bring on some beautiful women now. It’s not what you think” Aquilina then told the intimate audience. The final 3 songs of the set featured on the Sinners EP and the performance of each of them were both different and extremely special. This being the fact Lauren had her own string section. Now this made me see them from a whole new perspective. First up you had Talk To Me which was a ballad and you can sense pain from its lyrics. This was packed with a punch and Lauren put everything into this tune. “Sorry if I cry about the next song” Lauren then said before Irrelevant. This was a beautiful emotional ballad which had been superbly written. The lyrics can easily bring a tear to your eye “You won’t even notice that I’m gone”. “So this is the last song. Thank you so much for coming and I promise that I’ll try and buy as many of you expensive drinks as possible. If you bought the EP or even if you just ripped it off YouTube or anything. Thanks ‘cos it’s just nice” Aquilina said before ending with the title track from the current EP and this being Sinners. This is one incredible song and it had been perfectly written. The vocals were faultlessly delivered and what I liked is that the lyrics clearly tell a story. Sinners was delivered at a mid tempo and it was contagious as well. “So let’s be sinners to be saints/ And let’s be winners by mistake / The world may disapprove but my world is only you/ And if we’re sinners then it feels like heaven to me”.

SET LIST

King
Ugly Truth
Lovers Or Liars
Fools
Talk To Me
Irrelevant
Sinners

OVERALL: Lauren Aquilina is someone who is extremely talented. She is a phenomenal keyboard player as well as having a wonderful vocals. I was pleased to get this opportunity to see Lauren play this intimate set as it whetted my appetite for The Borderline gig this September.

The EP Sinners is literally incredible and hearing it performed live was quite something. By having a strings section makes you see those tracks in a new light. Not even the fragile microphone put her off.

Also I must mention the new track Lovers Or Liars. Now that is a song I really hope Lauren records and releases.

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