Village Underground in Shoreditch was the scene for Nigerian artist Nneka to showcase material from her brand new release My Fairy Tales amongst older classic tracks from her back catalogue, to a huge crowd of passionate and very vocal fans.
Following a storming support set from South East London artist and Lidl lover Afrikan Boy, Nneka appeared on stage to a blast of screams and cheers from the audience who had been eagerly anticipating the show all night. With the lighting set from behind Nneka and her band on stage, large looming shadows were cast across the exposed brick walls of the East London night spot, adding to Nneka’s already powerful presence on stage.
New tracks from My Fairy Tales such as ‘My Love, My Love’ and ‘Local Champion’ were performed alongside the likes of ‘Heartbeat’ and ‘Africans’, two tracks taken from Nneka’s 2008 album No Longer At Ease, but it was the vocal quality that Nneka showcased on the night that really stole the show.
Seemingly unable to miss a note, Nneka’s vocals were something to behold; even people who had previously seen her perform live were impressed by the supreme class of vocal brilliance that was on show. Perhaps the warehouse venue and echoey surroundings helped the cause, but there was no denying that Nneka was easily one of, if not the best live vocalist to ever grace the Village Underground stage.
At numerous points throughout the show, Nneka paused for moments of reflection, allowing the audience to take in what had gone before and really think about the topics that she covers in her songs, from Boko Haram to the oppression of Africa as a continent. There aren’t many more important artists around in the world today making politically charged music and with Nneka traveling around the world spreading the word of unity and love, whilst evoking feelings of belief in all who witness her performances, it is surely only a matter of time before she makes the world seriously take notice.