GIT Award 2013 and Esco Williams single launch: The Grey Space, Water Street, Liverpool
Esco Williams completes a truly triumphant year with his debut single launch alongside a feast of music talent in support of the GIT Award 2013.
Esco Williams capped a phenomenal 2012 by performing a stellar set in front of a buoyant crowd at the palatial Grey Space.
MOBO Award winner, Esco thrilled an invite-only jam-packed crowd at the Grade II listed Water Street venue to launch his debut single The New Challenger to mark the official opening of entries for the GIT Award 2013.
The Toxteth soul star rose to national prominence after being named among the 12 shortlisted artists in last year's GIT Award before going on to dominate the Merseyside live music scene, scooping the UnSung MOBO and becoming a figurehead for the emerging talent in Liverpool music.
His Grey Space set - which lent heavily on his 'soul-powered nerd' persona (echoed in a room full of game stations allowing guests to participate in console battles) confirmed him as the complete entertainer with an armoury of tunes to match.
Alongside his space-funk collective The Kontrollers, Esco featured a selection of tracks from his forthcoming debut album on Hi-Rule Records including a seductive I Want You More, a dripping with funk Day One and a slammin Hi-Rule which had the crowd purring with delight.
Making a series of heartfelt shout outs to his dedicated followers, the night completed an important first chapter in the making of Esco Williams. For the new challenger, the next level awaits.
Alongside him at the Grey Space - a new venture by the team behind Leaf on Bold Street - were fellow GIT Award 2012 nominees Ninetails, who performed a stunning high octane set largely from their new EP, Slept And Did Not Sleep.
Maybe We's evocative dreamy swirl had guitarist Jordan Balaber displaying duel frantic finger fretwork and footwork on the pedals while bassist Phil Morris took to the venue floor leading the bounce from all around.
Centre-piece Rawdon Fever inevitably stirred up a storm, but it was interesting to see just quite how many converted to a band who the following week released their debut EP proper. The wheels are well and truly in motion.
Speaking of converts, for many, the surprise package of the evening arrived early doors as top 20 tipped MTV's Brand New for 2013 MiC LOWRY stunned onlookers with their precision soul pop.
Harmonies bounced off the marble surrounds, echoing up the spiral staircase bringing guests to their feet and closer to the small stage for a look of Liverpool's young prince's in waiting.
Displaying maturity, tight locked grooves, drilled vocal detail and natural presence, the quartet of Ben Sharples, Kaine Ofoeme, Akia Jones, Delleile Ankrah and Michael Welch have been mentioned on these pages before but it's undeniable they're on the radar of many more after this first-rate display.
With GIT Award winners Loved Ones providing a DJ set and musicians from Silent Sleep, By The Sea, Jamie Broad, Afternaut, Forest Swords, Natalie McCool, Manukah, Mono LPs, Deafen The Creatures, Jay Alexzander, Broken Men and a whole host of other Merseyside creatives in attendance the evening provided a special showcase of Liverpool music.
Pictures by Victoria Tetley.