REVIEW: Rudimental, 02 Academy, Newcastle

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Cooler than a group and as noisy as any band, London-based collective Rudimental bounced on to the stage in Newcastle.

The foursome – plus assorted talented singers and musicians – made a similar explosion onto the music scene last year, as their debut single Feel the Love (featuring John Newman) topped the charts, along with debut album Home, which was nominated for the 2013 Mercury Music Prize.

They are no strangers to the sell-out crowd at the 02 Academy, especially as they were one of the headline acts at the Toon’s ever-popular Evolution Festival this summer.

Definite purveyors of sunny day party anthems, the appeal of the quartet – Piers Agget, Kesi Dryden, Amir Amor (Amir Izadkhah) and DJ Locksmith (Leon Rolle) – looks set to stay, as their stop-off in Newcastle is part of a world-wide tour.

Of course, hit single Feel the Love steals the show, with its high-energy vibe, with masses of speaker-shaking bass and jazzy horns in the breakdown, and an uplifting soul vocal from its guest singer, cleverly segued in from a cover of Fugees’ Ready or Not.

However, with Rudimental it’s not all glow sticks and big shapes on the dancefloor. Rudimental rose from the underground and vocalists Sinead Harnett and Ella Eyr exposed the reggae influences, coupled with soaring melodies on More Than Anything, which features of-the-moment crooner and one-time Mackem Emeli Sandé, on their platinum-selling album.

It was back to the (mostly) younger crowd giving it their all for the anthemic Not Giving In, which splices with some fairly meaty 90s-style drum and bass with a roving trumpeter.

We ended on a darker edge, with Ella’s vocals draping over jagged synths for their fourth single release, Waiting All Night, which was nominated for Best Song at the prestigious Mobo Awards.

Jane O’Neill