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Issue 1084

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Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, O2, London 29/11/14

Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, @O2, London 29/11/14 @bluesandsoul.com
Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, @O2, London 29/11/14 @bluesandsoul.com Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, @O2, London 29/11/14 @bluesandsoul.com Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, @O2, London 29/11/14 @bluesandsoul.com Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, @O2, London 29/11/14 @bluesandsoul.com Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, @O2, London 29/11/14 Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, @O2, London 29/11/14 Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, @O2, London 29/11/14 Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, @O2, London 29/11/14 Gedeon & The People: Brooklyn Bowl, @O2, London 29/11/14

Were it not for all the camera phones and flashing monitors in the venue, you could easily think it was the early 70sâ€Â¦Bringing a funky energy to the stage reminiscent of acts like Sly & The Family Stone, Gedeon Luke & The People managed the daunting task of getting an initially sedate Wednesday night crowd up on their feet and dancing.

Less than 24 hours after performing on Jools Holland's BBC show "Later", the group appeared at The Brooklyn Bowl in London's o2 Arena complex.

As the performance started, most of the audience were sitting at tables in front of the stage, or propped up against the bar. But less than an hour later, a sizable number were grooving away with the charismatic frontman, who had leapt down onto the dancefloor to join them.

It was a performance by musicians who clearly love what they do. Well drilled and bouncing off each other, the group delivered a powerful platform for Luke to show off his astonishing voice.

Luke is an artist who wears his influences on his sleeve - the set contained nods to Sly Stone, Al Green and Curtis Mayfield, as well as Jimi Hendrix. A stripped down, funky rendition of "All Along The Watchtower" gave him a chance to show off his vocal range and unbound energy. A lot of the band's material could have fitted well onto the classic "There's A Riot Going On" album back in funk's golden era.

Renditions of "Lend Me Your Sunshine", "Live Free" and "Echoes" from the band's "Live Free and Love" long player went down well with the audience.

A very expressive singer, Luke - who shot to fame Stateside when he reached the semi finals of American Idol as a teenager back in 2006 - showed all the makings of a performer with the world at his feet.

The show lent itself well to the intimate setting of the Brooklyn Bowl, and it was a nice touch that band members joined audience members for a drink after the set.

Judging by this performance, we'll be hearing a lot more from Gedeon Luke & The People, definitely an act worth checking out next time they're in town.

PHOTOS: DAVE BURKE
Words Dave Burke

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