Review: Luke Leighfield and Jose Vanders at The Borderline – 27/09/11Posted: September 29, 2011
If there was a prize for the two people who grasped the gaze of the room’s wondering eyes and enticed the audience into their clutches for the entirety set, Luke Leighfield and Jose Vanders would win hands down. The pair hold a joint headliner spot tonight, topping the bill at London’s Borderline.
Up first is artist and singer/songwriter Nicholas Stevenson, who is the only act here tonight to be accompanied by a full band. Stevenson’s mellow vocal and folky sound is very current, drawing comparisons to Ben Howard. He’s sure in for a bright future in this field. The second support comes from Lail Arad, a bun-clad lady with a gorgeous voice. ‘Over My Head’ is very catchy, sounding like something you’d hear in a quirky french cafe. The keys tingle with the intricate melody as Lail shows everyone what she’s capable of.
Luke Leighfield is up next, just one man and his keys, he looks slightly awkward as he takes to the stage. But a song down and a few sips of water later and he’s revitalised enough to amuse the audience, who all stand (and sit of the steps) taking in his humourous comments about the venue’s lack of fairy lights and his recent burrito. Comments aside, Luke is brilliant. A under-estimated soul that gives a flawless performance, playing a whole host of tracks including favourite, ‘Have You Got Heart.’
Jose Vanders plays twenty minutes early so that some fans who have travelled a long way to see her could actually witness her set, showing Vanders’ kind nature. This is carried through the whole performance as she wears her heart on her sleeve (well, on her green chiffon dress) and tells the audience the tales behind her songs. Their influences range from the man who walked across a tightrope between the Twin Towers in ‘Man On Wire’ to the boy who took her out for muscles and chips in, ‘Blue Notes.’ Jose’s animated performance is quite beautiful, her voice is sweet yet very striking.
Luke and Jose are joined onstage by singer/songwriter Marcel Legane, who strums along contently and donates some vocals to add texture. To end the night, they play their cover of Bon Iver’s ‘Blindsided’ reminding everyone what hidden talent has been showcased this evening.