Ghostpoet – Concorde 2 – 8th November 2017

Ghostpoet – Concorde 2
Photo by Ben Walker

Obaro Ejimiwe, aka Ghostpoet, has made his name through his mysteriously intimate sound and by delving into the most sinister places of the human mind. When he plays tonight’s sell out show at Concorde 2, from start to finish, he does not disappoint.

Opening tonight’s set is EERA, a synth group who definitely have the potential to go far. Whilst not matching the severity of Ghostpoet’s intensity, the group instead focus on a more ambient sound which carries through the room well. The vocals are fantastic and inject a great pulse of energy to get the evening started. EERA definitely have the talent to achieve big and are still exploring the capabilities of their sound. Once they work out the direction they truly want to take, they will definitely be a name that is worth keeping on your radar.

Obaro and his backing band enter the stage under the cover of darkness and immediately blow up the room with a torrent of sound. It is instantly apparent just why his name is so hyped as his energy is sublime and fixates all gaze towards himself. Despite Obaro’s music not exactly being singalong material, the crowd are overwhelmingly enthusiastic and unleash a wave of applause and cheers, a fantastic start!

Dark Days + Canapés was one of my favourite records of the year and hearing each track in a live environment has only enhanced the sound that little bit more, hearing the sharp snapping of a snare drum and every strum of the guitar within ‘Woe Is Meee’ or ‘(We’re) Dominoes’ really makes the tracks feel just that little bit more ‘real’, even outshining their recorded counterparts.

The innate ability to perfectly combine accessibility with eeriness is something which few other artists have been able to achieve, but it is this that has set Ghostpoet apart from the bulk of other musicians around today. Each scenario painted with his intricate lyricism puts you right in the middle of the scene and leaves you hungry to hear more. The crowd are all hooked to every word and each has a glint in their eye in admiration and respect for the artist.

Perhaps a little more interaction between the crowd and Obaro would have been nice. The artist has always been eager to express his love for the Brighton seafront, saying this is where he would love to end up living, but that passion and excitement simply wasn’t as present as you’d want it to be, most likely to maintain the mysterious ambience of the room.

It would be typical for a set which almost borders the two hour mark to become tedious, but the crowd simply cannot get enough of the ghostly sound. Later in the show he does bring out the big guns, both ‘Immigrant Boogie’ and the simply infectious ‘Freakshow’ end the set before a deafening demand for an encore fills the space. You can see the entire room bopping and singing along to the darkened tunes in a manner that is simply awe-inspiring.

It may seem hard to imagine how the heavy style of Ghostpoet’s sound would transition into the live environment, but Obaro has shown this evening that it is not only possible, but better than you could possibly imagine. Ghostpoet remains one of the most lively artists around to be following right now and has once again proven why. Without a shadow of a doubt, you won’t find a show like this anywhere else and I would urge anyone and everyone to get down to your local Ghostpoet show whilst you can.

Ben Walker