A top quality night of live music delivered amid the faint odour of prepubescent sweat, Topshop skinny jeans and hysterical high-pitched screeching of a predominantly tween audience at the Wedgewood Rooms Rizzle Kicks gig on Sunday 11th March. It should have come as no shock that the average age of this original Youtube sensation were about fourteen. They are the Facebook Generation after all and instrumental in the success of Rizzle Kicks today.
However, if you find yourself, like we did, wanting to stomp on them or knock their shiny iPhones (WHO is buying these children iPhones in the first place?) out of their hands, don’t feel bad; just punch up to the front and show them how the adults can too “Get down with the trumpets!’.
The first support act Random Impulse (aka Jovel Walker) was not at all how you would expect a grime/hip-hop artist to be. He played with a cool rocky vibe given that his electric guitar had a larger presence than his rapping. For an artist that seemed to have a completely incongruous feel to Rizzle Kicks he impressively engaged the audience and was a very entertaining support. Pepper was the second support act who lacked in the audience engagement that Random Impulse had but made up for it with her singing. She had a robust, soulful voice giving the impression of a young, cockney Adele.
Rizzle Kicks burst onto stage and immediately the small venue buzzed to life. Their energy was utterly infectious and the sold-out crowd were soon dancing and jumping along with Harley ‘Sylvester’ Alexander-Sule and Jordan ‘Rizzle’ Stephens like they were mates that they had met down the pub. Their sincerity and friendly banter drew you into their electric performance, with the intimate location suiting their style perfectly. Rizzle Kicks involved the crowd, dealt with all technical hiccups effortlessly with humour and hopped around the stage as if they had lived to perform there.
Their talent is undeniable. Harley has a technically impeccable voice that perfectly accompanies Jordan’s sharp rapping and despite adopting an ‘old-school hip-hop’ style their songs feel refreshingly modern. Rizzle Kicks have created a very clever, unique blend that is sure to keep them around for a while.
Highlights of the gig included Mama Do the Hump complete with the little dance, Miss Cigarette and of course Down With The Trumpets. Rizzle Kicks are performing in several UK festivals this summer including T in the Park, V festival and Bestival where they’ll be busting some shapes so I recommend them to anyone who wants to get down and dance (just beware of the tween following).
Written by Liz Ryan
Photography by Hannah Mesquitta