Discovery 2 showcase at AAA
We were treated to a spectacular show of new talent at another Discovery 2 showcase at AAA in Kensington last night, which I heard audience members describing as “the best ever”. Quite an accolade when this supporter of high quality unsigned artists has boasted the likes of Ed Sheeran and Scouting for Girls amongst its previous performers.
First up Texan-born Rodney Brannigan showed great virtuosity on the guitar with some unexpected tricks and the ability to play two guitars at once with real dexterity in a very physical performance. However, underneath that and his tapping to the extreme on guitar and foot tapping with his tambourine (both adding a great amount of energy), it’s difficult to hear his lyrics clearly. He brought a good deal of humour to the stage, with a decent cover of The Beatles’ Come Together and a song of his own about schizophrenia, creating a varied and engaging set. Brannigan is obviously a very accomplished musician but asking myself “would I go and see him again?” the answer would probably be no. However he is surely worth a recommendation.
Next up was the band Echoes; they played some big festivals so it was a surprise to see them at this showcase. There were obvious 80s influences like ABC and Human League. Their show is effective and enjoyable, a performance that could fit well on a bigger stage.
Third to the stage was The Manic Shine. They remind of Neil Young’s Crazy Horse, ie they started off at 200 miles per hour and increased speed. It’s always great to see a band clearly enjoying themselves and having a great rapport with their audience. The highlight was when the lead singer jumped into the audience and the front line leapt into the air as one.
The evening was rounded off by another fantastic performance from Fjokra, a wonderful band displaying multiple fusions of pop, rap and reggae. A great round performance, with brilliant stage craft and imaginative use of the venue. Another band having a great time and dragging you along with them.
Tim Britton & Emma Bartholomew
Photos: Ella Cronin, Music Is My Life Photography