Live Review: BANKS @ Koko

on Monday, April 07, 2014
BANKS live at Koko, London (1 April '14) // Words: Raman K

Some of the hottest beat-makers across House, Dance and RnB have spent the last year pushing and shoving to produce a track for BANKS. A hot tip for 2014, the LA artist has built her own brand of darker RnB through non-traditional hook-ups with the likes of Shlomo, SOHN, Jamie Woon and TEED. On the final night of her UK tour, BANKS created some spellbinding moments in a set that may have revealed a new genre of alt-RnB.

White and blue strobes flashing, BANKS strutted to the mic giving off an impression of a hugely confident popstar-in-the-making. After a slightly muddled first half of the set, all was rescued with the raw emotions evoked in 'Waiting Game'. In her element skulking across the stage and winding her hands to her honey-husky vocals, she delivered Fiona Apple-esque intensity to RnB.

'Warm Water' had the crowds whispering the words and holding lovers tightly. Some were even hoping she would incorporate the brilliant Snakehips remix of the track. Paying homage to her heroine Aaliyah, there was a unique rendition of 'Are You That Somebody', a cover originally performed for BBC Radio 1.

BANKS’ encore reflected how much this solo tour meant to her. With a stylish rendition of The Weeknd’s 'What You Need', she signed off with a flourish and to huge applause. The slight downside (if any) is that it is arguable that her best music has been improved by remixes from the DJ elites such as The Chainsmokers, Kaytranada and Ta-Ku. Music festivals might just be the only place BANKS would consider performing these dance and funk versions of her discography.

Nevertheless, Team FG believes BANKS is set to emerge as an enormous talent in 2014 with seismic production value backing her eagerly anticipated debut album.

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