Shura, KOKO, Wednesday 1st June 2016
There’s an enthralling eagerness amongst the crowd as Manchester’s Shura walks on stage. Originally scheduled to play O2 Shepherds Bush Empire, a relocation to Camden was announced due to refurbishment, but this certainly didn’t stop fans from filling every corner of KOKO, much to the excitement of the synth songstress.
‘Nothing’s Real’ kicks off the setlist with bright lights and sparkling synths as accompaniment; the 80’s party has begun (fancy dress not required, but you might need your dancing shoes!) The video of second song ‘What’s It Gonna Be?’ was released earlier that day, based on a true story of “thinking you’re in love but then realising that’s maybe just because you feel you should be.” Shura’s storytelling continues with another tale of modern love and delivered with an infectious 80’s backdrop, whilst spine-tingling ‘Touch’ invites the crowd to sing along with the Moscow-born singer showing off a raw rasp to her vocals, echoing those of Cocteau Twins‘ Elizabeth Fraser.
We don’t hear much from Shura in between songs, just a few laughs and the odd one-liner; a humble interaction with her audience, high-fiving those in the front row. A smooth transition between the next handful of songs illustrates Shura’s dominance on the decks, but synths are soon swapped for strings as the audience revels in the kaleidoscope of sound and lighting during ‘White Light’, the final song from the set and offers a powerful backing from her band.
The performance feels a little too short as before we know it, the singer is saying her goodbyes and the lights are turned on. These 80’s dancefloor fillers offer a tantalising selection of fizz pop, creating a moreish warm buzz that the audience (us included) can only hope will continue until the wee hours. A small selection of new tracks from Shura’s highly-anticipated debut album, Nothing’s Real filter through the setlist, so it won’t be long until the party can carry on a little longer.
What’s It Gonna Be?
Kidz ‘n’ Stuff
What Happened To Us?
Make It Up
Follow Charlie on Twitter @croft_charlie