By Alice Beesley
Psst - you can listen to The Great Escape Preview show here:
Lighthouse @ East Street Tap
The venues set times were about an hour behind but, I was just lucky enough to catch a set from Lighthouse. Having not been on my original list, this was a happy accident.
Lighthouse had instant presence once they hit the stage. The Indie rock band from London showed off their narrative lyrics and catchy hooks with style. Their powerful riffs drew me in and influenced the decision to give them a review. This is what Alternative Escape is about - listening to bands you hadn't planned to see and that utter deliciousness of enjoying something you've newly discovered. Lighthouse is one band I will definitely be listening to in future.
Nathan Ball @ Paramount Stage
Nathan Ball waved shyly as he and his band took to the stage - entering with a calming presence, the audience silent as they began to play. His indie folk style set the listeners in trance-like states of mind as Nathan Ball and his band synchronised together producing powerful harmonies with shimmering guitar and synth sounds reminiscent of California Indie rock. Nathan Ball's lyrics are honest and emotional, he captivated his audience and passers by as they stopped to listen and joined into clap as the songs progressed to a climax. No doubt, Nathan Ball is one to follow.
Belleville Orchestra @ The New Road Stage
The London/Brighton based gypsy swing band played in the sunshine and drew their audience in with upbeat jazz and gypsy style renditions of classics such as Louis Prima's Jungle Book hit - I Wan'na Be Like You and Blackstreet's - No Diggity. The listeners couldn't stop themselves from bopping to the 1930's style beat. Children danced with their parents and girls Lindy Hopped freely to the music. Listening to Belleville Orchestra made me feel like I was really at a festival. I don't see how anyone could not enjoy seeing this fantastic band perform.
J-Felix (DJ Set) @ Fountain Head
Brighton based producer J-Felix is a master at what he does which you can see through his pure concentration - timing each beat leading to the next track curating an ongoing mix of hip-hop, electronic, boogie and funk. The disappointment was only the audience not seeming aware of what they were witnessing and subjecting the DJ to a background addition to their drinks. I do believe J-Felix is one of the best of his genre, up there with the greats such as Mr. Scruff and RJD2.
Rose Elinor Dougall @ Shipwrights Yard
Rose Elinor Dougall's performance oozed cool as she and her band played their moody rock with effortless energy as performing seemed to come so naturally to them. The compositions felt almost sermon-like with synth and organ backing alongside hard powerful harmonies. Rose Elinor Dougall's deep strong vocals were reminiscent of 60's and 70's female-led rock bands such as Jefferson Airplane and Blondie. This girl is one to watch for the future.
Kudu Blue @ Hope & Ruin
Kudu Blue was the highlight of my weekend, this group gave a fantastic performance of their unique electronic sound. The Brighton based group gave me chills as their lead sang Lauryn Hill style lyrics and hit, what I can only compare to, Marian Carey high notes. Each member of the group brought something special to the performance, especially noting one who played two instruments at the same time, jumping from synth to bass. After each song the applause was greater and louder than before. Kudu Blue are a must see Live.
Nova Twins @ The Prince Albert
The only words I can use to describe this band are - FULL BLOWN BADASSERY. Watching Nova Twins felt like I was witnessing the rebirth of 00's Nu Metal. Their heavy metal and urban sound was intense, as audience members appeared to fight the desire to start a mosh pit. Their Gwen Stefani (circa No Doubt) vocals, Rage Against The Machine like lyrics and punk mentality was powerful to witness. I fully recommend catching this band live as there is no way I will forget it.