Wednesday, May 08, 2013

LIVE FROM NEW YORK: Little Boots Unleashes 'Noctures' in SoHo

Little Boots live in SoHo, NYC
My love affair with the tunes performed by Victoria Hesketh, better known by her moniker Little Boots, has spanned back to her Dead Disco days of mid 00's yore. On Monday night, she spun a few of her hits (along with two brand new cuts off her excellent sophomore album, Nocturnes -- out this past Tuesday) at the flagship Diesel store (yes, the clothing company) down in SoHo for in an intimate live performance and I couldn't have been more thrilled to be in attendance (and front row, no less!). 

Ms. Little Boots hit the stage just past 8PM, opening with the first official single off Nocturnes in the dark "Motorway". Armed with a backing band of three vocalists with Apple laptop synth machines, Boots' small figure was bolstered by her keyboard synthesizer, multiple mics and her own secondary wonder synth contraption (and her fab wedge shoes that I covet). She stated her usual performances include a drumkit but it was missing that night due to space constraints. It's pretty refreshing to meet a musician I admire that I can have normal eye contact with -- for those of you who are unaware, I'm rather vertically challenged at 4'11 (but taller in more ways, obvs).

She walked away from her setup with her mic and picked up a tambourine for new cut "Confusion". After thanking everyone for coming, she smiled and said the next song was an "old song" and if you knew it, to sing along. The initial synth of "New In Town" (aka #6 of my Top Songs of 2009) and the fans in the audience reacted accordingly.

80's-tingled "Every Night I Say A Prayer" followed. Next up was the sparkly, straight-from-the-70's-discoteque "Beat Beat," co-written by Pascal Gabriel who's worked recently with Kylie Minogue and Marina & The Diamonds and by far and large my favorite from her entire sophomore set. While much of Nocturnes runs a bit dark, "Beat Beat" has glimmers of her polished, hooky debut album, Hands.

She closed out her set with her current single -- the fantastic "Broken Record" -- and finally with "Shake," the lead number from her 2011 mixtape (Shake Until Your Heart Breaks) and the original "hype" single for what would become Nocturnes.

Overall, Nocturnes the album is fairly stacked with pre-released singles and hype'ems and if "Beat Beat" doesn't become a single, I will cry foul. "All For You", complete with a bouncy synth bassline, also shouldn't be missed. I also really love the energy of "Satellites".

Little Boots put on a great live performance -- it was really incredible to see her brand of electrosynth come to life in person (especially the vocoded bits of "Shake"). I felt like the crowd was a mix of fans like yours truly on one end of the spectrum versus seemingly apathetic hipsters (it was Soho after all -- perhaps it was for the free booze?), but you wouldn't know it from how in the zone she was. Her trademark, warm vocals and laidback delivery juxtaposed really well with the electro backdrop and didn't get lost in the live shuffle like I feared. If you get the chance to see her live, do it.

Nocturnes is available for purchase now, including on US iTunes.

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