Nix Nugent performed at The AAA Bar in South Kensington High Street on the 17th January. She was accompanied by her regular keyboard player, Rupert Piano Talent, and they played a really riveting set.

Nix has been gigging for the last couple of years and has slowly been building up a repertoire of impressive songs and a small but dedicated fanbase, often playing pubs and small music venues around trendy London haunts in and around Islington and Shoreditch. Tonight was her first foray into South London to date. Unlike many new artists trying to make a name for themselves in the music scene, Nugent chooses to eschew cover versions, and writes all her own material in association with Rupert Piano Talent.

Together they make a commanding and melodic duo, with an eclectic (not to mention eccentric) assortment of tunes at their disposal.

I went on a very cold, dark night with impending snow on the cards – yet the atmosphere at the gig could not be more different; the AAA Bar is warm, cosy and vibrant, and would be a great place to spend a Friday night. Nix suits this kind of venue perfectly with her larger-than-life personality, exuding confidence and charm in equal measure. By contrast, Rupert Piano Talent is a more laid back and methodical performer, completely attuned to the direction Nix is taking the songs. “Improv” is the order of the day but you’d never know from the panache they display on stage.

Nix has a strong voice and a real knack for writing catchy and thought-provoking music. But there is also much humour in this music too. You wouldn't necessarily expect to find a performance as captivating as this in a small music venue on a freezing cold Thursday night in January - but that only goes to show the wealth of talent that can be found out there (going largely unrecognised). All you have to do is hunt it out.

The opening number was the soulful (and aptly named) ‘Soul Song’. There were some onstage technical difficulties with the pedals and monitors, but rather than detract from the performance - if anything it broke the ice and enhanced the fun ambience of the night. This was followed by the quirky and blues-esque ‘Devil's Tambourine’ and the mournful ‘Desert Desire'; these songs counterposing each other well when played back-to-back. ‘Horses That Are Gifts’ is the surprise song tonight - a new track with a strong reggae vibe - that is played tonight with a guest drummer to get the audience's feet moving. ‘Mother Earth’ takes another change of pace. It is quite reminiscent of ‘Adagio for Strings’, and is a strong indicator or the variety of music and vocal ability at Nix's disposal. Nugent finishes the set with ‘Ophelia’, which is a dark tune with powerful and intense harmonies, and is the ideal way to end her stint on stage. The set was short, but just long enough to get the audience going and leave them wanting more.

Hopefully Nix Nugent will get to play some bigger venues in the near future.














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