Eva Lazarus is not one to focus on one genre. As she said at the live show, ‘I don’t listen to one type of music, so I don’t make one type.’ Whether it be Hip-Hop, Reggae, or Jungle, she brings a vibrancy and energy that led to the creation of her sophomore release ‘Brandy Kisses.’ So, it was great to be able to see the supporting live show with Eva truly shutting down the Hare & Hounds in Birmingham.
Before the main act, we were treated to some old-school UKG and the soulful vocals of Madi Saskia. Her tales of heartbreak were matched by the chilled keyboard sounds. ‘Speechless‘ in particular was emotional, as highlighted when she hit those high notes. It was an unexpected, but very much appreciated start to the night and showed the talent coming out of Birmingham.
When it was time for the main act, fans were not disappointed as Eva Lazarus brought the vibes that you would expect from her music. Backed by her band members, she kicked off with the confident, self-love jam ‘Define Me By My Love‘ which opens the new LP. Other tracks from the new one like ‘Flashing Lights‘ got her moving and giving an electric performance. Meanwhile ‘I’m On My Way‘ showed her confident rapping abilities and a hint of sass, as she glided across the stage. Clearly, she was there to have a good time as much as the crowd. (something she did even when performing pregnant, to the worry of her mother)
Eva Lazarus also knows how to keep the crowd going, interacting well with them, and even joking a jumper was not the best outfit choice considering the heat. ‘How Am I Looking?‘ was her love letter to blackness and afro hair. The highlight was the line about leaving someone in crutches if they touched her hair, which was hilarious. The vibe switched as we moved to material from her previous project ‘More Fyah‘ with Mungo’s Hi Fi.
In an instance, sections of the crowd darted forward. They brought their best moves to the heavy bass and reggae-inspired 140 sound of ‘Babylon Raid.’ Her most streamed hit ‘Amsterdam‘ was smooth and soulful, documenting a trip to the famous city following a breakup. Mixed with fast rapping and top-notch singing, it was great stuff owing to why this track has resonated with others. The speakers struggled to handle the bass on this one and the following tracks. (which the poor laptop found out about later)
‘Live My Life‘ had the crowd and Eva Lazarus moving in unison with its self-love and ragga vibes, and even a lil freestyle about the jumper situation. We then were treated to some raver anthems, with Benny Page collab ‘Front Left‘ and DC Breaks’ ‘We Never Slow Down.’ They brought out the gunfingers across the room and that room was packed.
After the laptop had a fall, we were treated to covers of tracks like Adina Howard’s ‘Freak Like Me,’ before the final part of the show commenced. ‘The Party Is Over‘ was a fitting closer with the string elements, bouncy hip-hop kick drums, and ballad performance being a nice finish. But, of course the crowd wanted more so we got one final freestyle-esque performance before she kindly had a chat with those who came to the show.
Despite a few issues and even a fan asking her out, Eva Lazarus not only kept her composure but performed her socks off. Whether crisp singing, energetic rap melodies, or even a bit of patois, she knew how to turn up. This was everything you wanted in a live show; passion, versatility and something unique to just hearing the record. Eva Lazarus seemed chuffed having been born in the 0121 herself. From that performance, this city I’m sure can’t wait to have her back.
The Brandy Kisses Tour continues on Thursday the 20th of October at Sneaky Pete’s in Edinburgh. Tickets for the rest of the tour are available here.