Review of Rizzle Kicks at Brighton Dome
The spirits were high last night at a concert in aid of AudioActive, a Brighton-based National Lottery funded charity which runs free weekly workshops and masterclasses for youngsters from the Brighton area.
Established in 2004, AudioActive have quickly become a wide-reaching organisation and charity, helping those from disadvantaged backgrounds as well of those looking to get into music but not sure how to do it.
Their programmes work alongside schools and colleges to offer kids a real chance to gain some hands-on experience of music, taught by professionals, to give them some skills to help launch their career as the Rizzle Kicks did, first meeting at AudioActive‘s Hip Hop Foundation in 2007, soon followed by their admission to the BRIT School where the band officially formed in 2008. From then on, the sky has been the limit and the duo quickly became synonymous with Brighton’s hip-hop and youth culture, as shown last night by the near capacity crowd of excited school children and parents.
The opening acts were the winners of a competition that AudioActive held on their website www.audioactive.org.uk. The winners of the first three support slots were Luke, Frankie Stew and Barcode who all gave confident and mature performances.
The highlight of the supports for me was the main support Half Crown. Their mix of rap vocals with guitars, bass and drums provided a refreshing contrast to the previous acts, and the crowd seemed to be getting behind them too. The lead rapper was very charismatic and had an infectious energy which spread all across the band, which all seemed to be having the time of their lives on the stage. I am sure that the band has a promising future in music. It was nice to see some hip-hop without the hats.
After some delay the Rizzle Kicks came on stage to a predicted barrage of cheers from the audience. Their patter with the audience was very natural and was their dancing throughout the set. They gave a tight performance with their backing band (trumpet, guitar, drums and bass) of favourites from their album Stereo Typical, all played with great enthusiasm which didn’t drop for a moment during their set. With constant plugs for AudioActive, sometimes even in the middle of the songs, the band certainly did their bit for the charity that helped them to get started so long ago.
After the gig an enthusiastic army of charity collectors met the audience to collect any spare change and to hand out leaflets about the cause. I have a feeling that the journey home for many of the children will have inevitably contained “Mum/Dad…. I want to join AudioActive“.
WORDS by Tom Sayer