Every once in a while you go out on a slightly random one mid-week and end up seeing someone who’s pretty interesting. Sure, you can plan your nights out and target specific acts in order to get a feel for what’s going on in any particular musical movement, but sometimes it’s nice just to trust in someone else’s itinerary. Which is what DLTM did when we saw Hayden James at XOYO. The Old Street has been holding live gigs for as long as we can remember (in fact, we saw Jessie J perform there way before she was famous), and works as a great space for showcasing new music to an open audience.
Hayden was the headliner for the evening, but before he jumped on stage RIVRS were commanding the stage. We arrived midway through their set and saw singer Charlotte in full flight. Their performance was tight, a mix of accessible songwriting/vocals and breezy, poppy electronica – a nice way to lead into Hayden’s similarly upbeat music. Have a listen to their cover of one of our favourite nineties jams, ‘Don’t Let Go’ by En Vogue.
When Hayden came on the number of people in the club seemed to double immediately, probably a direct result of his smash ‘Something About You’, which has pulled in over seven million plays on YouTube and sent Hayden into the stratosphere. He delivered a cool, tropical selection of music full of optimism and light atmospherics, sunny vocals and catchy rhythms.
Both acts helped to promote a fun, sociable atmosphere at XOYO, which meant everyone there had a great time and filled the place with positive vibes. As we said, an unplanned, though enjoyable mid-week outing that brought two new artists to our attention.