Jungle at Shepherd’s Bush Empire
It’s been a turbulent week for Jungle. They had to cancel their Cambridge gig due to technical issues and then faced the Mercury Prize panel. Although they didn’t win, they certainly won the crowd at the Shepherd’s Bush Empire on Thursday night. Their debut self-titled album proved to be a massive hit over the summer. Initially they hid behind an enigma, only revealing their identities at Glastonbury, and the response ever since has been overwhelming.
Opening with the summer smash Busy Earnin’, the whole of the Empire were on their feet. It was more like the final reprise than the opening track. The atmosphere was palpable with lead singer Tom greeting the audience. This wasn’t a gig to get to know the band – there was no small talk; instead, their instruments did all the chatting.
Throughout the night Tom repeatedly greeted the crowd with “Hello Shepherd’s Bush” because he and co-lead singer Josh grew up there and “have dreamed about this moment for ten years.” The emotional involvement was clear as they sashayed around their keyboards, guitars and various instruments. The drummer was playing milk bottles at one point!
Their new soul, funk, upbeat vibe is enthralling and had the audience enamoured from the beginning until the end. With seven people on stage, the crowd was never bored. The only downside to Jungle is that they haven’t got enough diverse songs, yet. But that amount of talent, soul and passion can definitely deliver a worthy follow-up album.
Photo: Ollie Millington (Getty Images)
For further information about Jungle and future events visit here.
Watch the video for Busy Earnin’ here: