Raphaella + Laura White @ Proud Galleries 15th April 2014

The Drop took place at Camden’s Proud Galleries. Now The Drop is a live music event which showcases UK artists. On the bill you had Angel, Raphaella, Laura White and Kane. For me it was both Raphaella and Laura White that did it for me. Now I have been a fan of both for quite a while. Raphaella I finally got to witness live this January but since then we (no pun intended) turned out to be like Parallel Lines as the dates that she announced clashed. Then Laura White I had been a fan since she appeared on the X Factor all those years ago. I even met her at the Brunswick Christmas Switch On but the set she played was hit by delays meaning I never saw her live.

The set played by Bolton born singer/ songwriter Laura White consisted of just 4 songs three of which came from the current EP What My Mother Taught Me. Back in the day Laura appeared on X Factor she was always my favourite and it was a great injustice that she got eliminated. Now White was in Cheryl Cole’s category back then along with Diana Vickers and eventual winner Alexandra Burke. If I remember correctly the sing off saw Laura against Ruth Lorenzo and in my eyes Laura easily out sung her. But that was then and this is now. White independently released her new EP which reached #22 in the Official UK Album Charts and #1 in the Singer/ Songwriter charts.

First up you had That Girl which even though it doesn’t feature on the new EP it literally stunned me. The vocals were extremely powerful and there was a soulful vibe that I picked up on. White had a cracking pair of lungs as she literally belted out this funky song to perfection. It was then straight onto Jimi Hendrix which was one hell of a tune. It was edgy and the vocals were very strong. Everything about this was amazing and it is one that gets you moving. Jimi Hendrix was a slick song aided by stunning lyrics which had been perfectly written. To Be Loved was a game changer from the other tunes that had been sung. Now To Be Loved was a soulful ballad which was beautifully delivered. White’s vocals were extremely soft and this tune was very touching. The best song was saved for last. This being Rush Hour which oozed plenty of energy. Laura put her heart and soul into this number. It’s lyrics were fantastic as it played as a narrative making you picture a guy driving through the rush hour just to get to the girl to tell them that they love them.

SET LIST

That Girl
Jimi Hendrix
To Be Loved
Rush Hour

There was then a changeover which lasted for 10 minutes and this being Raphaella. Now I have been an admirer of her music for quite a while now but I have been unfortunate as the live dates announced have always clashed. I had the chance to witness her live at Boxpark in January but dates announced after these being Roundhouse Rising and the Parallel Lines release party have again clashed. So you could say Raphaella and I are Parallel Lines.

This set was short and sweet. When she graced the stage Raphaella asked how is everybody doing but she actually sang the words. Actually it was a bit Jessie J esque. Raphaella only played 3 songs all from the brand new EP Start A Fire which was released near the end of March. Now Raphaella looked stunning in her Red dress. House opened up this short and sweet set. Now this tune is to amazing for words. For starters it reminded me of the theme tune to Night Rider and secondly it was uber infectious. This was a masterpiece, it had been superbly written and the lyrics were actually a dash aggressive. It was then time for the title track from the new EP and this being Start A Fire. Raphaella mentioned how she wanted everyone to move and that is what happened. Start A Fire is packed with a punch. The vocals were spot on and my favourite part had to be the energetic and fast paced chorus. The fire in question was started within the heart.

Things were wrapped up with the lead single to Start A Fire and this being Parallel Lines which was released on 25th February. Now this was amazing and it sounded different compared to the previous two tunes that were sung. Yes it may be infectious but I found it to be quite hypnotising as well. You are hooked from the very beginning. Parallel Lines was utterly infectious and gets you moving as well.

SET LIST

House
Start A Fire
Parallel Lines

OVERALL: All in all this was one spectacular evening. I would of stayed till the end but it was running way over time. Laura White literally blew me away. Each song showcased from her current EP had a soulful vibe to it and the vocal delivery was out of this word. You could easily tell that White was extremely passionate as she belted out every tune to perfection. I was indeed left with the need to hear more and I most certainly will book the next time she is in London. I am really glad Laura White is making music and based on this she is here to stay.

Now where do I start off with Raphaella. First she is a true talent who has released two exceptional EP’s Idiot and Start A Fire which she financed by selling her dad’s Persian rugs. She is a mixture of English/ Scottish and Persian and currently lives in North London. Regarding the set it may of been short but it was the perfect showcase of the new record. Each of the three numbers were sung to perfection and again I was lost for words as the performance was simply flawless. If the EP’s are incredible I wonder what an album would sound like. It was a real pleasure finally having the chance to Raphaella after as I had to dash off back at the Boxpark show in January. I most definitely will be at the next one.

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