BBC Introducing @ Brudenell, Leeds, 18 Jan
The second BBC Introducing showcase at Leeds’ Brudenell Social Club sees an eclectic night of emerging talent from across the region, chosen by the BBC’s local music champion Alan Raw
20-year-old Leeds College of Music singer Cara Hammond opens up the bill this evening, with a meandering folk-soul set. There’s a small army of local fans to support her tonight, although it’s a shame that the stripped-back, jazz-tinged folk numbers are a little lost amidst the overzealous atmosphere. Smartly-dressed, catchy pop is where it’s at tonight – with blasts of well-executed neo-soul. The band is rife with budding soul sensibility, all topped off with a rich, luscious vocal from Hammond which belies her tender years.
Next up is hip-hop artist Humor, performing tracks from his latest EP XLCR. The beats are simple and the lyrics well observed, but the overall performance loses the attention of the audience somewhat, following the buzz around Cara Hammond. There’s definite talent with some interesting rhymes, but the live show is still a work in progress.
Celebrating three years together as a band, Fizzy Blood are still gleefully rough around the edges, with enough scrappy volatility to add a flurry of panache to their shows. Obvious Queens of the Stone Age comparisons aside, there’s weight to the hefty, bluesy bruisers they deliver with demented schtick. The impressively solid, persistent rhythm of their fiercely catchy repertoire is chewed up and spat out with delight by frontman Benji Inkley. A 25-minute showcase isn’t the longest time for a band to make their mark, but charisma is something you’ve either got or you haven’t. They have – plenty of it.
If Fizzy Blood turn things up a notch, then the anticipation piques ahead of Krrum's high octane, quirky, distorted romp. The brainchild of producer Alex Krrum, their inspired incantation blends everything from pop, electronic indie, dance beats and heavy synth-bass into a glorious melting pot. There’s an obvious marketability to the unique, painfully-contemporary sound – unsurprising then that they’ve already been picked up for the latest Apple iWatch ad. Don’t expect to see them on an 'introducing' stage much longer, as Krrum is surely destined for bigger things.
Headliners NGOD introduce a marked change of temperament to proceedings, with the Bradfordian quintet cutting a more reassured, polished figure than the rest of tonight's cohort. Their high-energy, melodic indie has all the hallmarks of a party, but what’s particularly impressive here is their distinctive groove. Drummer Alex Dutton-Taylor is a veritable powerhouse driving the sound, whilst lead singer Sam Augustine is as engaging as he is melodic. A great band to bring the evening of 'undiscovered' talent to a close – proving that West Yorkshire has plenty to offer British Music.