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Review: Viktor Taiwo, Fabienne & Keyomo @ ThisIsWired, Shoreditch 12.8.13

Born out of Shoreditch House almost five years ago, ThisIsWired is now one of the best live music nights in London. Now taking residency at sister venue Concrete and taking place every second Monday of the month, the guestlisted night has consistently exalted some of the finest emerging talents around, with Ed Sheeran, Rizzle Kicks, Pixie Lott, Labrinth and Ellie Goulding being only a smattering of the plethora of talent to perform under its name.

As small flocks of Wired regulars and tentative first-timers alike slipped through the doors of Pizza East and into the basement where the event is held, the atmosphere was the opulent and delicate vibe that has come to define ThisIsWired. Bustling chatter, laughter and the clinking of ice-filled glasses opened up guests to the possibilities of the evening’s proceedings.

Excitement filled the air as the hotly anticipated Viktor Taiwo came on stage. Representatives from record labels – including Universal, Sony and Ministry of Sound – infiltrated the TIW music-loving TIW crowd to watch Taiwo, this his first ever live performance. Towering over his band with his eyes closed and mic grasped, the singer’s velvet-claked vocals and vivid lyrics oozed uncompromising soul left everyone within earshot dumbstruck.

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Later, Ben Howard’s Only Love was the fuel for a sing-along wildfire amongst the audience. His final song Castles – a highlight of the entire night – was a homerun which adorned Howard in applause as he ended his set. After a brief intermission kept lively by the resident DJ, Fabienne was the next act on display, whose powerhouse vocals belied the singer’s dimitive stance of no more than 5’2”. Fabienne’s tongue-in-cheek tales of a possessive boyfriend left the onlookers spellbound.

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The final act of the evening was the well-travelled and well-gigged Keyomo. The self-titled ‘electrojazzsoulpop’ four-piece from Lithuana encouraged a cacophony of fun, with all directions awash with dancing, rocking and swaying. Keyomo frontwoman Daiva used her superb stage presence to command the enthrall the crowd like a master puppeteer, encouraging pure elation to fill the venue as the brass section let rip. Continuing to defy all norms and avoid any possible categorisation, Keyoma then went into full-on hip-hop mode, with an extended rap by now backwards-cap wearing Daiva over Mumbo Jumbo.

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ThisIsWired founders Kate and Michael stood like proud parents whilst graciously thanking their guests for spending their Monday night at TIW, with the DJ unloading a string of R&B classics to cap off a great night. Hands were sent shooting up high and bodies gravitated to the dancefloor, all in aid of a cheeky schoolnight shuffle. As night rolled into morning, Concrete slowly cleared out, with the TIW Team safe in the knowledge of securing yet another month atop of London’s live music scene.

Further information and dates can be found on the ThisIsWired website.

- N. Gent

Picture credit: Sophie Jones

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