Nizlopi may be playing the penultimate date on their 2014 UK tour at The Mars Bar in Worcester tonight, but they certainly do not seem to have lost any momentum as the lads take to the stage barefooted in the packed out venue with as much energy and enthusiasm as they had when they began over a week ago.
Making their way into the audience, a quiet hush descends across the venue while the band perform their first couple of songs acoustically in the middle of the room. There is always a rather intimate and personal feel to Nizlopi gigs in small venues and this was no different, as Luke’s endearing vocals were instantly showcased even without a microphone and both he and John kept constant eye contact with on-lookers watching in awe.
Returning to the stage, Luke told people to “get naked” (which fortunately nobody did), while the band continued to play a selection of their favourite tracks from their back catalogue including Start Beginning, I’m Alive Again, JCB Song and All My Life. Throughout, both Luke and John put on an impressive performance consisting of multi-instrumental talents from both, as Luke played guitar, bodhran and sang and John put on a solid performance playing upright bass and guitar while beat boxing. Later in the night, they also returned to the audience again to play a few more songs acoustically, including my personal favourite; Girls.
The show was scattered throughout with amusing little anecdotes about life on the road and how they came up with ideas for songs; perhaps one of the funniest being a tale from Luke about how he wrote Helen after meeting a lovely waitress while hitch hiking in the Lake District, which ended up freaking her out instead! Despite her aversion to the song, the audience seemed to lap it up and were singing along word for word.
Towards the end, the band were joined on stage by friends Jimmy Davis and Bradley Blackwell for uplifting political piece, England Uprise, before bringing the night to a close as a two piece again with beautiful track Freedom. Tonight I witnessed a truly magical gig from Nizlopi and with two more dates already announced for May 2015, I hope to hear and see much more from them during next year.