MTV Review: Tinashe, Live From Heaven, London
The 22-year-old star wowed her sold out crowd with tracks old and new...
By Chloé Fletcher
Tinashe has had a strong UK following ever since her first self-released In Case We Die EP back in 2012, but it was 2014 which proved a huge year for this California-born R&B starlet across the Atlantic – with both her debut single ‘2 On’ and album Aquarius making huge waves across the music scene.
Straight off the plane from Australia, Tinashe kicked off the first of her three sold out UK shows at London’s superclub Heaven on Monday 2nd March - and boy did she open with a bang! With slick dance moves aplenty, silky vocals and a little sprinkle of '90s R&B flair (think Aaliyah, with a touch of Brandy), Tinashe dazzled the crowd from the moment the intro for sultry track ‘Vulnerable’ kicked in.
Looking mysterious in a glittery cat mask, long black coat and baggy pants, Tinashe made it halfway through the song from 2013’s Black Water EP, before taking off her mask to a huge roar of cheers from the crowd. It didn't hurt that she was also joined by two ridiculously amazing male dancers...
The 22-year-old star then followed up with older tracks from her earlier EP releases, to the delight of the audience, with ‘Stunt’ and ‘Boss’ affirming their status as classics in Tinashe's fanbase - both tracks were belted out word for word by most of the crowd.
With a high energy Rick-Ross 'Boss' dance interlude mash-up, Tinashe then brought us to 2014, starting with ‘Bet On It’. The Devonté Hynes (of Blood Orange fame)-produced track again showcased Tinashe at her best, with slick choreography and strong vocals wowing everyone in the club.
The set as a whole was a mix of old and new tracks, spanning from Tinashe's three EPs and album, with dance breaks keeping the energy up throughout. Can we have a moment of silence for Rae Sremmurd's ‘No Type’ interlude in particular – Cali was most definitely in the building!
Stripped back, Tinashe’s sound is very minimalist R&B. The overall staging set-up reflected this, in the sense she was supported by a drummer and a DJ, meaning a lot of the focus was on her. Charismatic throughout the whole set, often coming off stage to take selfies with fans and sign autographs mid-song, she has the stage presence and energy comparable to some of R&B's greats.
Tinashe closed the show with ‘2 On’, which was one of the highlights from the night. The track, which in effect launched Tinashe from underground to mainstream, had everyone in the building singing in unison, which made for a touching finale. Before exiting the stage, Tinashe left the crowd with the quote, “If there’s something that you want in life, go out and make it happen” echoing around the venue. It's amazing to see how much this young superstar has evolved in just a few short years.
Tinashe’s album, Aquarius, is available now on iTunes