Music Reviews

“Fantastic, Up and Coming Talent” – Live Review: Lizzie Esau @ Rough Trade

Lottie Murray

On 1st February 23-year-old rising star Lizzie Esau performed at Rough trade for Independent Venue week! Lizzie’s ‘the future icons’ tour is co-headlined by George O’Hanlon and Rough trade welcomed Drew Thomas to perform in his hometown. Impact’s Lottie Murray reviews.

To kick off the evening, Nottingham’s very own Drew Thomas opened with a beautiful acoustically driven performance. His crisp, clean vocals suited such a small venue, and Drew really encouraged his audience to interact, which was an excellent way to open for the headline act. “Trying to Be You” was the closing song of Drew’s set and it explored the self-criticism and constant comparisons within the music industry specifically. The lyrics were evidently heartfelt and accompanied the acoustics incredibly well.

The punchy guitar riff immediately captured the attention of the live audience, which was immediately partnered with the energetic drumbeat driving the song

Lizzie Esau sauntered to the stage with her band following closely behind her walking through the crowd. They climbed on stage and immediately begun their set with an energetic, faux rock tune. Lizzie is currently at the beginning of her musical career and as her fanbase is continually growing, she decided to perform several unreleased tracks so that she can further entice her live audience. Lizzie joked with her audience about the fact that her label was testing the song’s reaction levels to see which ones were most likely to be released!

Her most recent song ‘Jellyfish’, which was released this year, is the embodiment of her Wolf Alice/early 2000s pop rock influence. Jellyfish is an incredibly catchy track that really highlights Esau’s range of genres and despite there being a relevantly small audience, you can tell that this song garnered the attention of the room. The punchy guitar riff immediately captured the attention of the live audience, which was immediately partnered with the energetic drumbeat driving the song. It is particularly evident from this track that Lizzie’s vocal ability works exceptionally with the pop rock genre she explores through her music.

Co-headliner George O’Hanlon humbly took on the role of his own music technician and then quietly started his set with little fuss; this suited his calm demeanour on stage and reflected his folk-rock performance. His performance contrasted the pop-rock show in Esau’s debut. He gently soothed the audience through his beautiful renditions of his songs such as ‘Seagulls’ and ‘How are you feeling?” and was reminiscent of folk-rock legends such as Hozier and Bon Iver.

The evening was a lovely celebration of Independent Venue Week and showcased some fantastic, up and coming talent!

Lottie Murray

Featured image courtesy of Alex Watkin. Permission to use granted to Impact. No changes were made to this image.

In-article video courtesy of @lizzieesau via No changes were made to this video.

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