For anyone that has seen SBTRKT perform live in the past, it’s almost always been behind the decks, and of course, hidden behind one of his many brightly coloured tribal masks. Last night however was somewhat different; with Aaron Hughes (sans full mask) taking residence behind a drum kit and assortment of hardware at The Hoxton Bar and Kitchen.

The opening act was Charlene Soraia, a part British, part Italian, part Indian folk singer who, with electric guitar in tow, sang songs including Lemonade (about her friends dad), Bike (not about bikes), Railway, Daffodils and Postcards from iO; an astronomic ditty about the moon of Jupiter. A good rapport with the ever-increasing crowd and glimmers of Adele and Joni Mitchell were seen by those who arrived early enough to avoid the queue which by now, was already stretching its way through the bar and out onto the pavement.

Next up was Redinho from Glaswegian record label Numbers who brought some West Coast flava to Shoreditch. Aided by his Novation synth and talkbox, he drew influence from and comparisons to Zapp’s Roger Troutman in an adrenalin-fuelled, upbeat and somewhat exhausting performance.

Multi-talented DJ and producer Sinden filled in between sets, playing a mixed selection of tracks including the Ramadanman / S-X bootleg of Woooo Glut, BTSTU by XL’s latest signing Jai Paul and Hudson Mohawke’s Schmink Wolf Refix of Lady Luck by Jamie Woon amongst others.

Finally, and much later than billed was SBTRKT, who, accompanied by Sampha on keys and vocals, performed a range of tracks from the new, self-titled album in an hour-long set which included Living Like I Do and Trials Of The Past. A welcome addition to the lineup was Roses Gabor, sporting regal headgear and providing dulcet tones on Pharaohs. Jessie Ware’s absence was replaced by some pre-recorded Little Dragon vocals on Wildfire and the encore was an impromptu rendition of Up and Down described as ‘a jam’ and ‘kind of made up on the spot.’

All in all the night was a huge success with SBTRKT performing to a sell-out crowd, which will no doubt have promoters Eat Your Own Ears looking for a larger venue the next time they host the man behind the mask.

SBTRKT by SBTRKT is released via Young Turks on Monday 27th June and currently available to pre-order from iTunes.

YT057 – SBTRKT – Living Like I Do by Young Turks


(Ed. If you like this, check out SBTRKT and Sampha’s Abbey Road performance.)