Nilüfer Yanya is a star.
You’ll know that from the young singer-songwriter’s releases. You’ll know it from her Pitchfork features, and you’ll certainly know it from the way she graces the stage at Omeara in London tonight.
The fact that there’s barely any room to breathe at the venue is enough of a testament to just how impressive Nilüfer Yanya’s inception as an artist has been. As that voice husky voice booms out from a petite frame, we’re immediately hypnotised. Yanya comes armed with a four-strong band but during her set we wonder whether she even needs them, such is her presence as a performer.
The songs are wonderful, both old and new. The latter includes a bravura Thanks For Nothing, while one hit of Baby Luv is enough to galvanise the crowd into cheering even louder. But her mark of star quality is present in Golden Cage: it’s a tremendous romp through jazz and soul, a mastery of warped time signature, replete with a knockout performance from her saxophonist.
If this is where Nilüfer Yanya is at in hear early 20s, it’s both exciting and awe-inspiring to think where her career could go from here.