Gig Review: Thundercat puts on a funk clinic

Stephen Bruner AKA Thundercat took all in attendance at the Shepherds Bush O2 on a funky, soulful jazz ride that showed little signs of ending all evening.

Armed with his trusty 6 stringed bass guitar, his impeccable wit and backed by his incredible jazz band, Thundercat’s set was just what I’d hoped it be – a fun, and funky instrumental showcase that showed off all of his best features.

Each song he played off his February release ‘Drunk’ (which I absolutely can’t get enough off) would last up to 10 minutes, as Steve & his band would go into full jazz mode and deliver non-stop energy and just jam out till they felt like stopping – not when the song tells them to do so.

Thundercat has collaborated with and produced for the likes of Flying Lotus, Erykah Badu, Childish Gambino and most notably Kendrick Lamar – to which he treated us with amazing covers of ‘These Walls’ & ‘Complexion’ to the delight of the crowd.

Having never been to a Thundercat show before, I had no idea how good his voice would be live & boy was I impressed – he sounded just as soulful as he does on the album and really made the slower cuts like ‘Walk on By’ & ‘Lava Lamp’ sound sweet as.

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He isn’t just masterful on the the bass, Thundercat is a proper funny guy, not just lyrically but even when there was a small hitch of a broken amp, Bruner took it in his stride and went off on hilarious tangents on how much he loves video games and broke down the lyrics of the song ‘Tokyo’ which had everyone, himself included, laughing.

Props to the crowd too, by the way, no one was pushing, going mental or generally being a you know what – they were all just vibing out like me and soaking it all in.

Speaking of which, I spoke to a few famous faces at the gig, including actress Jessica Hynes and singer songwriter Lianne La Havas (she’s a super super nice lady and even let me get a cheeky pic with her.)

The best performances, however, were saved till the end with the up-tempo banger ‘Friend Zone’ and the show’s closer ‘Them Changes’ rounding off a thoroughly wicked Thursday night in London.



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