Ronika – Nottingham Rock City, Thursday September 15
The new lease of life which has infected Nottingham’s music scene over the last few months shows no signs of slowing down this autumn. Dog Is Dead’s next single is due out next month, as is the second album from Spotlight Kid. Kirk Spencer was recently playlisted on Radio One, Jake Bugg is recording for his debut release on a major label, and Swimming’s new album is scheduled to appear in November. As for Ronika, whose third EP comes out at the start of October, things are shaping up very nicely indeed. Her last release (Forget Yourself/Wiyoo) brought her to the attention of the national press, and music blogs have been buzzing with previews of In The City, one of the tracks on the next release.
Despite all of this increasing visibility, we’ve seen very little of Ronika on stage this year. But with her live London debut imminent, and a handful of other dates just announced, it looks like that’s all about to change. The first of these dates took place in Rock City’s basement on Thursday night, to a mixture of Gary Numan fans that had decided to stick around after his set in the main hall, and students who had arrived early for the weekly club night Tuned. It was a fairly low-key affair, and in some ways a warm-up for next week’s London show, but none of this dimmed the strength of Ronika’s performance.
Accompanied by Jack and Martin from 8mm Orchestra on guitar and bass, Ronika gave us a seven-song set, starting with Do Or Die from the first EP, and ending with an as yet unreleased track called One Thousand Nights. Her delightful brand of Eighties-influenced dance-pop translated well to the stage, and she proved herself to be a captivating presence, with a sweetly assured vocal style. The hook-heavy One Thousand Nights already sounds like a future hit single, and Ronika already looks like Nottingham’s next star.