Lady Leshurr, Monday 26th October, Mad Ting Tour 2015 at Sound Control, Manchester
Manchester’s Sound Control was graced by a royal performance as ‘the Queen’ aka Lady Leshurr took to the stage on the latest leg of her ‘Madting’ Tour on Monday night.
In the basement of the venue, a physical metaphor for the relative exposure of this genre of music, is where one would expect to see such a gig. Lady Leshurr is one of the key players in the grime scene who is pioneering to drag the English-born genre out of the doldrums of basements and onto the world scene.
With an unusually younger demographic for the crowd, there seemed to be an initial naivety to the world of grime, as classic tracks such as the Julio Bashmore remix of Boy Better Know’s ‘Too Many Man’ and Stormzy’s box-office hit ‘Where do you know me from?’ were played without much of a response. The crowd’s favour seemed to lie more with current pop/hip hop songs, as tracks such as Fetty Wap’s ‘Trap Queen’ and Drake’s ‘Hotline Bling’ received much more appreciation.
As the ‘shurrporters’ grew slightly complacent as Leshurr prolonged her entry for over an hour, all qualms were put to one side when she took to the stage alongside her two dancers. As Leshurr’s set commenced, the crowd immediately warmed to her head-popping rhythms and smooth Brummy vocals, even more so when she was pulling members of the audience on the stage with her. Her lively personality shone through as she integrated the civilians into her songs and even allowed them to join in with the lyrics.
As music embraces the advancements of the modern world, it seems as though the majority of Leshurr’s set has formulated from her posts on social media outlet Instagram. With her renowned tracks ‘Vaseline skank’ and the sampling of Jeremy Kyle guest’s comic saying ‘Lukatar’, both of which she mentioned had originated from skits she had posted online, she effortlessly combines her online following and her live crowd to her selection.
Known for her quick-delivery of her lyrics, Leshurr proudly boasted her flawless ability to mirror Busta Rhymes’ infamously fast verse on ‘Look At Me Now’, even calling for the DJ to reel it up to smash it to pieces a second time.
One of the moments of the night came as the Queen showed how grateful she was to the sell-out Manchester audience, as she connected on a personal level to preach how much their support meant to her, having ‘been a normal person like you all once’. Before starting her song ‘Chase the Dream’, she gave an inspirational speech to her followers to ‘be whatever you want’ and to ‘follow your dreams’, which was a touching addition to the performance, resulting in her needing to take a moment off-stage.
The crème de la crème of the event came with the final number, as she performed her huge hit ‘Queen’s Speech Ep. 4’, suitably welcomed with flailing arms to the chorus of ‘brush your teeth’ as Leshurr flung toothbrushes into the crowd.
Despite her growing fame and reputation, Leshurr still allocates time to meet her beloved fans, as she waited around after her performance by her pop-up merchandise stand for photo opportunities and autographs.
Any self-respecting hip hop/grime fan who enjoys a fun, vibrant music performance would be ‘shurr’ to go to see the Queen in action.
By Laurie Waite