Review + Photos by Frank Ralph

Having seen Rudimental at Parklife Festival a few years back I knew that tonight’s show was going to be a lot of fun. I was expecting high energy, bouncy fun, and I wasn’t disappointed at all.

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The night built up gradually as London songstress Olivia brought her Corinne Bailey Rae ish vibes to the stage. Just her and a guitarist and a half dozen beautiful songs. It was a gentle but engaging way to kick things off and her cover of Wait in Vain was fantastic. A complete contradiction in feel to the intensity of tonight’s headliners but a welcome one.

Olivia

Next up Ray Blk took the stage with a simple yet effective lighting set up spelling her name either side of her on the stage. She raised the noise levels and some pulses during her 50 minute set with tracks like Run Run and a killer version of Naughty Boy’s Running. The BBC Sound of 2017 winner has a new album called Empress out on Friday and the tracks we heard from it tonight showed its promise.

Ray Blk

Rudimental brought us Saturday night on a Tuesday night and one thing is for sure – there’ll be a lot of people waking up with sore heads (and feet), ringing ears and massive grins on their faces. From the intro to the encore the energy in the room was at the highest level and there was definitely a party vibe about the whole show.

With DJ Locksmith hyping the room, everyone was on one. You have to be light on your feet to make it through a Rudimental gig as it’s all purposefully designed to get you moving. Building tension and beats until the room bursts with a jolt of energy.

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They even acknowledged it as the best start to a Rudimental show ever.

The beauty of alternating vocalists so often within the first few songs and over the course of the set was that everything felt fresh, and different segments within the show felt like mini gigs in themselves. With soul, dub and reggae vibes featuring throughout they sounded incredible. Rudimental are a really tight musical collective and everyone gets their moment in the spotlight.

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When you look at the kind of established names that have graced their tracks in the past you can see why these songs are massive crowd pleasers. Sun Comes Up and Let Me Live and Lay It All On Me sounded massive and new track Walk Alone from upcoming album Toast To Our Differences shows that they aren’t slowing up at all.

With bass that rattles your bones, trumpets and vocals that lift your soul up you are guaranteed to have a good time at a Rudimental show. Make sure you make it to the next one.

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See the full photoset from tonight’s gig here.

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