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REVIEW: Soul II Soul @ The Brighton Dome, 21/10/2018

The Verse’s Autumn Micketti tells us what she thought about Soul II Soul at the Brighton Dome on the 21st of October

It was clear as soon as I walked into the Dome that my flat mate and I were the youngest people in attendance. Soul II Soul began creating music in 1988. Although they, and their audience, were twice as old as I am they put on a show that was overflowing with love and enthusiasm. This year the group embarked on their 30-year reunion tour and made Brighton their third stop. It was quite the experience seeing this hip-hop group from the 80’s come back into the world.  Giving their music new life.

Soul II Soul brought down the house with their funky bass lines, dynamic vocals, and powerful messages of love and community. The crowd jumped to their feet as soon as the band appeared on stage. Letting out a loud cheer when Jazzie B and Caron Wheeler, two of the original members, stepped out hand in hand. Although I knew very little about Soul II Soul and their music, I was immediately swept up in the contagious excitement. The audience stayed on their feet throughout the whole show and danced their hearts out. With every song the cheers grew louder as Jazzie B and the rest brought out more of their greatest hits. The bass was so loud my ears began to hurt. Still, I managed to hear the women behind me shouting out the lyrics to every song.

It’s a magical experience when you see one of your favourite band live. I loved living vicariously through the women I sat in front of, as well as the rest of the crowd. Throughout the show Jazzie B would talk to the audience, making it feel as if we were at church rather than a concert. Although, if church had back-up dancers/vocalists, two keyboardists, and a funky bassist I would go every week.

The light show added an extra element of fun into the performance. They displayed projections of their past album covers on the screens. While other times geometric shapes would rain down behind the band and flash all different kinds of colours. It made me curious how different performing today must be; compared to when Soul II Soul first became a band back in the 80’s. Unfortunately, I did not have an interview with the band and was left to ponder the question on my own.

The group closed with one of their most famous songs, Back to Life. This is the only song I knew by them before attending. Therefore, I got such a kick out of being able to join in with the audience as they sang along. Their final message, spoken by Jazzie B, was one of gratitude and love. It was clear that this group truly cares about one another and are loving that they get to do this again.

Soul II Soul will be touring around the UK until November 4th. I highly recommend giving them a shot!

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