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Rox @ Scala, King’s Cross – 17/6/2010

Review by Tina Hart

Poor Rox. She tells us she’s had an emotional fortnight, recovering from a bad cold whilst trying to work on all the things accompanying her highly-anticipated debut album release, Memoirs. I couldn’t tell she was under the weather as I watched her headline gig at Scala, King’s Cross last night. 

A 21-year-old diva in the making, the pretty, petite, pop-y soulstress, looking a little nervously into the crowd, kicked off her set with track one, No Going Back from the aforementioned album, and I was soon reminded why she caught my attention as a support act at a gig last year. What -- DSCF2285a voice, it almost felt like a CD wouldn’t do it justice as she sang so powerfully and made it look effortless. Telling us all to ‘get involved in the clapping’ towards the end of the song, the energy in the venue was soon buzzing. 

Opening Page Unfolds with one of many notes of the night worthy of a place in opera, she sang with conviction, telling us of a ‘little boy in a big man’s frame’. Wooping and applause followed from the older-than-I-expected crowd.

Melancholy Sad Eyes was next which eased into a rockier ending. Then the first of two exceptionally brilliant choices of cover songs with an equally exceptional execution came in the form of Dream by Fleetwood Mac (or The Corrs as I remember it), fused with a touch of reggae sound, had the crowd loudly singing along.

Talking of heartbreak she experienced aged 19, Rox delved into Forever Always Wishing, then showed off her vocal repertoire again with audacious high notes in Do As I Say.

- d cDSCF2283After dedicating Precious Moments to her ‘special someone’, Rox randomly brings our attention to the huge dreamcatcher (you couldn’t miss it) adorning the stage (pictured) which coordinated with her feather earring. 

Previous single, the catchy, upbeat My Baby Left Me had the crowd hyped up and singing along. I’m bemused that it didn’t make a bigger impression on the mainstream chart (it got to number 91.. Re release! Re release!) Current single, the irresistibly funky I Don’t Believe, features in a make-up advert, so will hopefully place higher..

During the summery Rocksteady, Rox gets low doing the bogle dance move before moving to the keyboard and playing into album bonus track, Gallais.

A beautiful rendition of Seal’s Crazy sparks a singalong again, moving into the final song of the night, Breakfast In Bed, which I think would be great as her next single release.

The comparisons to Winehouse, Adele and Duffy were always going to come but Rox brings an ‘authentic’ earthy vibe to the UK pop/soul genre, I guess that’s helped by being signed to an independent record label and having her early musical introduction at church.

I could see tinges of Rox’s influences in her performance last night, a little Lauryn Hill, Alanis, Joni, Sade, that nice 90s soul vibe that us twenty-somethings grew up with, a little reggae, a little funky pop, with an outstanding live performance (and awesome band) and boasting great production on her album, I’m sure she’ll be making her mainstream breakthrough very soon.

You can catch Rox working the festival circuit this Summer or check out her debut album Memoirs


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