A raft of Liverpool’s new urban pop artists take to a packed Elevator Bar, Getintothis’ Laurence Cheeseman finds a scene on the up.
There’s been much bubbling in Liverpool’s emerging urban pop scene – and the opening ILuvLive Liverpool event inside a rammed Elevator bar showed why.
A strong cast of Merseyside’s emerging artists, from the crisp soulful pop of industry-eyed Ady Suleiman, to the stripped back pop foxyness of Getintothis tip Taylor Fowlis through to MiC Lowry‘s honed street-pop vocals and the charismatic philosophical balladry provided by the E-laborators‘ Merki, there’s much to champion of this developing scene.
For a cold, damp March evening the temperatures were high early doors as one half of Liverpool duo, E-laborators, Merki started the ball rolling.
His set of piano-rap ballads about poverty, hope and the hype machine provided a mellow opening to proceedings with Real Life proving the highlight. The calibre of the Liverpool talent on show was backed up by former GIT Award nominee, Miss Stylie‘s mini-epic 60 second rap battle ensuring a slot at the next ILuvLive event.
Vocal R’n’B group, MiC Lowry were given night’s biggest response – as a noticeable increase in the amount of teen girls down the front when Johann Green introduced them.
With their distinctly 90s vibe – think Boyz II Men on the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Christmas special, replete with acoustic backing – MiC Lowry their well-honed pop provided a glimpse of an act to keep an eye on, yet they could do with adding a bit of diversity to the mix to ensure they maintain interest.
Hotly-tipped vocalist Taylor Fowlis du jour brand of retro, jazzy soul, has brought her recent rotation on BBC 1Xtra on TS7‘s house-garage track Heartlight – which is given an excellent acoustic transformation here.
Her remarkable cover of Yesterday received a (predictably) rapturous response, adding rhythm to the Fab Four’s timeless melody – her fantastic stage presence certainly didn’t hurt either. At the risk of repeating ourselves – Fowlis is another one to watch.
Closing the night was the stand-out act, Ady Suleiman, who, while continuing the retro soul vibe; albeit with a refreshingly reggae-esque twist, added something of a real unique sense of occasion.
Ady also provided some relief from the evenings professionalism performing unfinished sketches of songs, and was certainly better for it. Tonight provided a snapshot into Liverpool’s pop future, it’s looking brighter than ever.
Death At Sea, Ninetails, Esco Williams and Ady Suleiman at Edge Hill University.
Getintothis on Taylor Fowlis live at Esco Williams‘ Pledge Party.
Taylor Fowlis to appear at Positive Impact‘s Epstein showcase.
Getintothis on MiC LOWRY.