REVIEW: Little Simz at the Deaf Institute, Manchester

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THE no-nonsense 21-year-old from Islington, Little Simz, is a young rapper with a big voice and an insane lyrical flow.

Performing at Manchester’s intimate Deaf Institute, the slim framed energetic artist fearlessly dropped bars against jazz-flecked beats on her first worldwide tour.

With the venue’s singular red lighting, Little Simz emphasis relies on her ridiculous ability to combine her breakneck lyrical message with the ability to rule the stage by never standing still to an addictive effect.

It’s hard to believe that A Curious Tale of Trials + Persons is the vocalist debut album, but it is clear that her talent for machine gun rattle style verses has been perfected overtime by producing a prior number of quality mixtapes and EP’s, all gaining hype from giants such as Kendrick and Stormzy.

The rapper who likes to be called an artist prefers to remain independent despite record labels tripping over themselves to sign her.

With such a commanding stage confidence, the track ‘God Bless Mary’ reflects Simz humble side as she thanks her next door neighbour for putting up with the noise by singing “Please bear with me I’m trying to make music to change my life”.

Dropping in with a hard electro cut the sinisterly titled lead single, Dead Body, demonstrates Simz uncompromising persona by delving into her darker side describing a devil on both shoulders.

Breaking melodic soundbites cut the moody base line as the artist broke into the audience coming off the stage to work the room.

Looking at her audience you can see that the quality of her music and lyrical style have an eclectic appeal.

For an artist on the cusp of big things, it was incredible to see how many of them are familiar with her songs by miming her verses word for word.

Featuring her support act, Chuck 20, string lead Marilyn Monroe demonstrates a mature versatility that Simz is not just a one-trick-pony, further embracing the already connected crowd.

It’s no surprise that in a recent interview with BBC Radio 1 DJ Charlie Sloth he affectionately labelled the artist as “trouble”.

Calling for “110 percent energy” the songs that went down well were fast and flowing in nature. Amazing production and a constant high energy reinforced her determination to make it on her own terms.

Definitely search out her EP’s and if you’re going out to buy one album this weekend you could do a lot worse – a heck of a lot.

By Rob Hall
@RobHall18

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