Live Review: Tuka, B Wise, LEFT, Soul Benefits

2 November 2015 | 2:23 pm | Mick Radojkovic

"The crowd is rammed into the OAF and we all get friendly as Tuka declares us 'superfriends'."

It's not easy to hype a crowd in the double digits, but Soul Benefits gave it a good crack. This three-piece crew from the Big Village stable are starting to make a real noise out of Mt Druitt with their old-school beats and collaborative flow. The three work off each other well and are well worth the early arrival.

Tonight sees alternating styles between dreamy electronica and hip hop in a way that works seamlessly. LEFT. are an inner west duo that slide into your ears like a delicious daydream. The silky vocals of Sarah Corry intersect with the edgy guitar and electronic sounds from Jono Graham in a way that reminds you that dreams can sometimes wake you up. New single, Jungle, is a hooky pop-like single that stays in your head long after they finish playing it. It's a beautiful and compelling set.

It's exciting to see a new rapper that can pull your attention immediately. That is B Wise, a Western Sydney Nigerian-Australian artist that totally 'pops' on stage. His magnetic personality shines through his songs that are impeccably produced and handsomely delivered. He invites us to hug our neighbour and we smile along to a surprising and fun set.

Tuka's new album Life Death Time Eternal is the reason we are here. It's a next-level real world album from an artist that has been smashing expectations with each solo release. Tonight, new R&B-flavoured soulful tracks like Right By You and My Star sit alongside older songs like Yeah Right and Die A Happy Man.

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Tuka gives us the full band effect, with LEFT. returning to provide the expert backing on this, his first headline tour. The crowd is rammed into the OAF and we all get friendly as Tuka declares us 'superfriends' and invites his fellow 'Thundakat' to the stage, Jeswon, for a rendition of Smiles Don't Lie. This is Tuka's night though and he delivers in spades. We sing along to Everything, sway joyfully to Nirvana and get goosebumps from Tattoo.