Mapei at Cargo
Having sprung to prominence since her single Don’t Wait went viral last October, it’s about time that Mapei’s distinctive sound made the leap across the pond. Wednesday night saw the young musician make her UK debut against the aptly on-trend backdrop of Cargo in Shoreditch, where it became clear that although she may be relatively unknown her fan base is as loyal as they come, and her genre-straddling sound is drawing more attention each day.
Kicking off with her newest track Change, the set was energetic from start to finish, which she lovingly elongated to include an encore and another performance of Don’t Wait to the screeching delight of the crowd. Intermittently flanked by two vigorous but spatially economic dancers, Mapei threw herself into every single number, flitting from soulful rhymes, arcing through pop melodies with witty lyrics, flirting with drum ‘n’ bass, with a bubbling rock ‘n’ roll bassline. Mapei is a musical chameleon, unlimited by an arbitrary affiliation to genre. To describe her music as some combination of rap/indie/pop is to negate the true depth of her work.
Accompanied only by two (glaringly talented) musicians – one on drums, backing vocals and various samplers, the other on guitar, synth and some extraneous bits and bobs – Mapei’s vocals and glistening presence captivated the entire audience. If there is only one thing to take away from this show, it’s that every single person on that tactfully crowded stage is incredibly gifted, which is rooted in the genuine chemistry in their work.
With her debut album Hey Hey set for release September this year, and with a voice, sound and energy that deserve a far wider audience, it would not be surprising to see Mapei headlining stadiums within the year. This is an artist with real talent.
Photos: Natalia Friedman
For further information and future events visit Mapei’s website here.
Watch the video for Don’t Wait here: