James Leese – Live @ The Night Owl, Birmingham, 23/3/17

The Night Owl, a small venue off Birmingham’s industrial estate, was buzzing with anticipation on Thursday night. The performing artists could be spotted mingling in the crowd; headliner James Leese seemed to know everybody present.

First up was Stafford based Alex Voss, who accompanied his vocals with electric guitar rather than acoustic. Creating a relaxed and chilled out vibe, Voss began his set and immediately impressed with a well rounded sound. The guitar mix was set up nicely and didn’t overpower the vocals. The set list was mixed and contained slower and faster songs, however it became clear that the faster songs wouldn’t work on acoustic guitar as they were mostly chord based. Some songs were quiet, others loud, and Voss demonstrated his capabilities by performing in different keys. However, it would have been great to see him using different dynamics within the same song.


Up next was local acoustic singer/songwriter Lauren Marie. Following Voss‘ casual vibe, she chatted to the audience in between tracks and admitted to not having a set list, and just performing whatever she felt like, however her songs were well rehearsed.

Her original tracks used lots of finger picked melodies underneath the vocals instead of just chords, which sounded nice and a bit different to most acts. She has a great vocal range and used different guitars for different tunings. Her most popular tracks were covers; she performed Always by Blink 182 and Mr Brightside by The KillersAlways sounded quite different to the original and she added new depth to the track.

At the end of the set, however, Lauren Marie looked cold and a little bored!

Here's a really rough video of what to expect on my newest EP, a short preview of the first track "alive". I don't wanna give too much away about production and what not. 🙂 Quite messy in parts but had to rush it! Catch me playing here next: https://www.facebook.com/events/387204948316319/?ti=icl xx

تم نشره بواسطة ‏‎Laurenmarie‎‏ في 19 مارس، 2017


Finally, to a big cheer, on came James Leese. Starting on Bye, Bye Butterfree, and then proceeding to tell the crowd off for not paying as much attention to the acts before him, it’s clear that Leese commands a lot of respect from his fans. His set list contained different tracks, including some new ones that will be on the upcoming EP (I Have A) RomComplex. All of Leese‘s music was well polished and it’s clear he feels at home on the stage, chatting to the audience and putting on a great show. Crowd favourites included The Nerd Song and Mrs Unknown. The set list chosen clearly demonstrated Leese‘s talents, as there was a wide variety of material, including A Song For A Waltz. There was only one occasion where he was out of tune in the whole set!