Taking place at The Basement was the first instalment of the Popjustice Deluxe Edition monthly series. I arrived at 5.16pm as they had said arrive there early as it would be busy. Only I went to the wrong venue as I was at Concrete thinking that the underground venue was The Basement. Realising my mistake I then went to the correct place. I did pace up and down Berners Street then I thought maybe The Basement is inside the hotel which it was. So I was taken downstairs when really I should have been queueing outside.
Once inside at 7.20pm it was an hours wait till the first act took to the stage. Playing you had Ronika, Tanika, M.O and inbetween there were DJ sets one which was by the one and only Kyla La Grange. Opening the evening was Ronika (Veronica Sampson) who is one hell of a singer/ songwriter and was born in Nottingham. This would be the 2nd time I had seen her play as the first time was supporting Little Boots in 2012. It may have been a while but I have been keeping tabs on her and I’m anticipating the release of LP Selectadisc this June.
It had just turned 8.30pm and Veronica graced the stage with her band sporting a pair of black shades. Each tune showcased appear on upcoming album Selectadisc (apart from Automatic) and all have been individually released over the past couple of years. What kicked off the set was the danceable Forget Yourself which sampled The Message by Grandmaster Flash. Now this was a pop disco track which was extremely infectious. Forget Yourself was drenched with summer beats. Moulded to the end of Forget Yourself was In The City. This had superbly written lyrics and an infectious melody. This song was also up beat as well and was delivered to perfection. Automatic was an up tempo infectious bubble gum dance pop track which I hope does make it on the album Selectadisc in some form. This was a hell of a feel good song. It was then onto Rough n’ Soothe. Despite being released last year this was the first time I was hearing it. I must say this is literally one incredible tune. Rough n’ Soothe was very sleek and I found the beats to be rather hypnotising. Shell Shocked is the latest offering by Ronika and it was a slice of electro pop goodness. This was upbeat and was aided by super catchy lyrics. Wiyoo got me hooked straight away. The style of the music is synth pop and it sounded a lot like Madonna’s material in the 80′s. This song was incredibly contagious and it is one that easily gets you moving and grooving. Things then came to a close with 1000 Nights which was aided by luscious lyrics. This by far had to be my favourite tune of the set as it was packed with a punch.
In The City
Rough n’ Soothe
M.O consist of Nadine Samuels, Annie Ashcroft and Frankee Rose. All three have been in groups before. The only girl that I am familiar with is Frankee who was one half of the amazing pop duo Mini Viva. M.O had been on my to see list since the start of 2013 but I never had the chance of seeing them play so I was rather excited to see that they were headlining the first Popjustice Deluxe Edition. When I heard them sing En Vogue’s Don’t Let Go I knew I was going to witness something incredible. The vocals were so tight. It came 10.25pm and the girls took to the stage. There were no mic stands whatsoever and what the audience saw was an energetic performance which oozed passion. Ain’t Got Time kicked things off. I stood in awe when watching this infectious upbeat song being played live right in front of my eyes. Being from three different parts of the UK (Frankee is from Manchester, Annie from Sheffield and Nadine from Buckinghamshire) they have a tight bond. “I ain’t got time to worry about people who don’t worry about me”. I would place M.O in the R&B category. Just from the very first number of the set I could tell that they have a long career in the music industry. Straight after it was onto Wait Your Turn which was a right cracker. The girls put everything into this. Wait Your Turn oozed bundles of energy and Annie even asked for everyone to put their hands in the air.
Real Love came up next and this left me with the hairs on the back of my neck standing on edge. I haven’t heard the original version of this track but this take had been stripped back. The three girls sat on stools and this number showed off each members startling/ strong vocals. This was extremely beautiful and this had been perfectly written. Real Love so has to be a single in the future. A mashed up cover followed on and this being Rather Be/ Drunk In Love the originals were sung by Clean Bandit and Beyonce. This was extremely short but it was utter bliss. Out the two it was more Rather Be than Drunk In Love. Like Real Love this had been stripped back and what I adore about this is the fact it shows off each of the girls vocals. The set came to an end with the incredible For A Minute which is the current single. Before jumping into it Annie announced that they were going on tour with Little Mix. As for the song I must say the performance was out of this world.
Ain’t Got Time
Wait Your Turn
Rather Be/ Drunk In Love
For A Minute
OVERALL: This was one stunning night showcasing some outstanding artists who I definitely want to see again in the future. Ronika was extraordinary and I enjoyed every single song that featured on the set. It makes me anticipate the release of Selectadisc.
M.O can make waves in the music industry and have massive potential. Everything about them was fantastic. As I said my favourite tune had to be the stripped back Real Love. I really want there to be an album now.
All in all this was a stunning opener to the Popjustice Deluxe Edition series and I will be there next month for the May Edition