Gig Review: Alex Vargas – London

Alex Vargas

Alex VargasOslo, Hackney, London, 27th October 2015

Words: Nick Jacques

Alex Vargas is a solo artist from Denmark who has risen to our attention over the past year with his delicate, emotional vocals coupled with soulful electronic beats. Prior to this he was in the band Vagabond that scored relative decent success with his band Vagabond and managed to secure 2 sold out tours and also performed at various UK music festivals like Glastonbury and T in The Park.

Since then he has gone his own way and is trying to forge a career of his own and tonight is his biggest solo gig to date and the intimate setting at Oslo is perfect for Vargas’ robust and heart-tugging vocals. With Vargas’ range and pitch, I can envisage Jeff Buckley and Kaleb Followill having an arm wrestle and Jamie Woon refereeing the contest.

On record his voice comes across as a bit polished and somewhat gets lost amongst all the production and electro beats but live he really comes into own and projects an altogether different spectacle with an intense and versatile vocal range which had the crowd swooning in and out of the palm of his hand.

Throughout the gig Alex gave off the impression that he has the hallmarks of an experienced troubadour; he was unseeingly fazed by the occasion and took the anticipation all in his stride with an air of maturity.

Tracks like Solid Ground, Till Forever Runs Out and Giving Up The Ghost sounded like they had more back-bone and thrust to them than in the recording studio. Despite these tracks being relatively new, they sounded like modern classics in the making. Plus the fellow musician who joined him on stage provided versatility and dynamism to the proceedings in spades which gave his sound a refined depth.

One of the elements which stood out for me at the gig was the ability of Vargas and his partner in crime on stage to utilise the songs by pulling them apart and taking them in different directions and providing an unexpected yet satisfying twist for his audience.

This is certainly an artist who has enough tricks up his sleeve in order to conjure up surprises on stage whilst remaining firmly intact with the environment around him. It won’t be long before he returns to these shores to impress us again with his dynamic and soulful musings. He is a great Dane in the making.

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