Acts you should catch at The Great Escape 2017

Overwhelmed by a 400+ artist lineup? We’re here to help.

Originally published in The Edge

Imagine the kind of festival that would nonchalantly complete its lineup on a Tuesday morning by adding 150 new names and you can begin to get a sense of what The Great Escape is all about. Forget faffing around in a muddy field and missing out on your favourite bands because your friends are making you wait in a half-decent perch for one headliner – The Great Escape is three days of the music industry converging in over 30 of Brighton’s finest venues to celebrate and be introduced to everything new and ready to take over. The archives are packed with household names who appeared before their big breakthroughs – from Adele in 2007 to The xx in 2009 via Christine And The Queens in 2013 and Bon Iver in 2008 – and this year’s bill now boasts well over 400 names ready to feature in the same conversations. Slaves will kick things off by gigging on the resplendent pier, local lad and two-time performer Rag‘n’Bone Man has already sold out his headline slot at the Dome, and Kano will take over the Old Market for some grime time on Friday night, but here’s just a little taste of the acts that you should keep a particular eye out for.

Continue reading “Acts you should catch at The Great Escape 2017”

Live review: Raye at XOYO, London

Still 19, the Londoner proves her star quality in a hometown sellout.

Originally published in The Edge

With piercing strobe panels and chorus of rousing sirens seeping through what little space a packed XOYO had to offer by 9pm on a Thursday, ‘Shhh’ provided a startling jolt to commence proceedings in Raye’s latest one-off sell-out. The ominous single from August’s SECOND EP is one she highlighted as “the most fun to make” from it, and the follow-on from its lyrical density, peppered with trembles of the vocal power within, gifted a welcome reality-beckoning breather not five minutes into the set. As queueing down Cowper Street had been so in vogue, she told of how she teared up at footage her manager had captured before beaming and bobbing her way through a collection of excursions into heartbreak, disenfranchisement, and outright pop gold. Continue reading “Live review: Raye at XOYO, London”

“I just want to be a massive artist” – An interview with Raye

Getting to know the ‘You Don’t Know Me’ singer ahead of her XOYO headline show.

After picking up a deal with Polydor in 2015 with the supportive clout of Years & Years and Ellie Goulding, Croydon teenager Raye has quickly begun carving out a name for herself both through prolific behind-the-scenes work and, following a grand splash with last summer’s sharp SECOND EP, breaking through to the charts as a vocalist with huge pop records alongside Jonas Blue and Jax Jones. Mid-preparation for her sold-out headline date at London’s XOYO, we met to find out all about the surprise success of ‘You Don’t Know Me,’ screaming in a driving lesson when first hearing herself on the radio, Stormzy’s songwriting ambitions, and ketchup. Continue reading ““I just want to be a massive artist” – An interview with Raye”