Umusic Fest: kaiser chiefs+mavarick sabre+rizzle kicks
Under The Bridge hosted a Universal Music ‘sync’ showcase on 1 September. Sync events are aimed at bringing together different strands of the media: social websites, film, TV, marketing and the like. The idea is that from small acorns major projects grow.
Umusic have organised plenty before. This, though, was the first to bring together more than one band: the mighty Kaiser Chiefs preceded by development acts Maverick Sabre and Brighton’s Rizzle Kicks.
Under The Bridge has just the right balance of music heritage and red carpet treatment for Umusic’s media targets. The venue was rammed with people who arrived curious about the UTB buzz and left raving about the live performances.
The entertainment kicked off with the catchy, quirky hip-hop duo Rizzle Kicks, already known for the phat Mariachi hit ‘Down With The Trumpets’ and the collab with Olly Murs, ‘Heart Skips A Beat.’ From the entrance music – cartoon theme ‘Inspector Gadget’ – to their rap version of label-mate Jessie J’s ‘Price Tag’, the saleable influence of producer Fat Boy Slim is obvious.
Their album is out at the end of October and guitarist Adam (yes, they use real musicians, even a trumpeter) came off raving about Under The Bridge’s ‘fantastic sound system’.
Maverick Sabre was next up. The soulful singer/rapper, born in the Smoke but raised in Ireland, has something of a Finley Quaye vibe to his vocal. He impressed with a deeper shade of r&b and dubstep, including the top 20 single ‘Let Me Go’ and the follow-up ‘I Need’.
And so to the main attraction, the Kaiser Chiefs. Under The Bridge is the most intimate venue they have played for six years and they clearly revelled in it. ‘Hello,’ began lead singer Ricky, coyly, ‘we are the Kaiser Chiefs. I hope you’re all here by choice.’
Having rattled through some of the three-minute anthems that have become landmarks on the British soundscape – ‘Everyday I Love You Less And Less’, ‘Take A Look’ – Ricky introed tracks from the latest, more contemplative release, ‘The Future Is Medieval’. ‘Everyone likes new ones, right?!,’ he ventured.
‘Little Shocks’ and ‘Starts With Nothing’ were well-received, though the audience naturally exploded at the opening bars of ‘Ruby’, pointing and singing the chorus as if in the Stamford Bridge stands 30 metres above.
Revelling in the close contact, Rick allowed the rest of the band to riff on ‘Oh My God’ while he strode through the crowd to the bar, ordering drinks over the radio mic, and returning with a tray of full glasses to universal approval.
And so a successful evening concluded. Almost. All that remained was for the well-known Leeds United fans to quit the stage with a whimsical, ‘Thanks for Ken Bates!’