Live Review: George Maple

9 July 2016 | 11:09 am | Samantha Jonscher

"Maple reveals herself to be a master of drama, completely in control."

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A sold out show at the Metro seems like an appropriate way to kick off producer/singer/songwriter/Future Classic darling George Maple’s biggest tour to date. Slinking onto stage in a gold-sequined jumpsuit and boxy kimono, shrouded in smoke and with the help of a massive drum kit behind her, Maple channels the arena rock of divas past. She opens with the drippy Sticks And Horses, the fruit of a recent collaboration with GoldLink. She immediately announces as charismatic and in sexy, self-assured control of her body. This is break at the knees and grind your hips sort of music, after all. A carefully backlit silhouette, Maple’s figure produces the same smooth lines and warm shapes as her voice. She’s slinky, confident and completely inside her production. The drummer and bassist behind her go a long way to turn her radio-ready tracks into big club sounds.

Maple reveals herself to be a master of drama, completely in control. She uses her voice to tease suspense and offer her audience salvation: on her highs, her audience screams with her (and there are many: plenty more big, belting crescendos than her discography implies). Such is Maple’s power. By the time she is into the mellow, sultry part of her repertoire, the audience is hooked on every slow, soaring note and oozing drop. 

After a costume change, she reemerges in more gold and more sequins, this time in thigh high boots, a leotard and suit vest. She teases the audience, promising to take off items of clothing the more they cheer. She is clearly at home centrestage, with all eyes and ears on her. Self-assured she may be, selfish she is not — Maple brings out collaborator and MC Tkay Maidza for a short set. The pair are raucous on stage together and Maple lets Maidza have the floor, backing her up while Maidza delivers her sharp and buoyant as ever rap.