Review: Lucy Rose at Engine Rooms (28/03/2015)

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On Saturday night the lovely Lucy Rose graced the stage at Southampton’s own Engine Rooms, the venue formerly known as Mo’Club. After initially finding her spotlight featuring on Bombay Bicycle Club’s album Flaws, her sophomore album, Work It Out, is on the horizon and Lucy Rose gave a wonderful performance in Southampton as she approaches the end of her U.K. tour. The small venue set the perfect backdrop for a lovely evening of music.

First to take to the stage was soloist The Half Earth. He combined his beautiful vocals with a slight electronic edge, with a tone that likens him to bands such as Daughter and Wild Beasts. The Half Earth was at his best when he created a fuller sound, particularly in ‘Borders,’ whilst being perfectly at home when only accompanied by his guitar. His debut EP Light Breaks In is available now, and you can download the single ‘Glass’ for free.

Emerging onto the stage to the sound of Pink Floyd’s ‘The Great Gig in the Sky,’ Lucy Rose unusually opened her performance with a currently unreleased track from her upcoming album. After seeming a little quiet in comparison to the rest of her band, it was reassuring when she moved onto ‘Lines,’ a punchy track from her debut album Like I Used To. On the stage, Lucy Rose transformed the laid back and more acoustic tone of her recorded music, giving an incredibly lively and energetic performance. The stripped down and melodic ‘Night Bus’ made for a lovely midway point to the evening (even though, as Lucy Rose said- it was a Saturday night). Her slower songs do well to expose the beautiful vocals that run throughout her tracks and this particular song has a certain nostalgic feel to the acoustic and folky tone often associated with Lucy. Leaving the crowd with ‘Red Face,’ the opening track on Like I Used To, neatly bookended her performance of songs both old and new.

Throughout the evening, Lucy Rose seamlessly intermingled new tracks with old, and introduced the audience to what will likely be the opening track of her next album-‘For You.’ The song is comfortingly alike to the sound present on Like I Used To, but on the evening Lucy Rose presented a progression between her recognisably stripped down sound and the more full-bodied and punchy tracks from her upcoming album. Her performance initially ended with another new track from her album, ‘Cover Up’, which evokes an electronic and exciting vibe – undoubtedly leaving fans eagerly awaiting her next album.

Her involvement with the crowd during the evening was extremely endearing, and her humble admittance that the majority of Like I Used To was written in her bedroom, not expecting to be heard, show far the singer has come. Southampton’s small venue was perfect for allowing this level of interaction.

It is rare to see an artist quite so humble as Lucy Rose, and refreshing to see someone so excited and appreciative of her audience singing along to her music. Her performance, including the support of The Half Earth, was extremely intimate thanks to the small venue, but still managed to be packed with liveliness and vigour. The summer seems too long a wait for Lucy Rose’s next album, Work It Out – which she is currently putting the finishing touches to – but let’s hope the time flies between now and then. In the meantime, ‘Our Eyes‘ is available to pre-order now.

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Third year English student, Records Editor, list maker and lover of Kinder Buenos.

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