Upon arrival at Copenhagen venue VEGA, there was a tangible buzz and excitement in anticipation to see new Danish bands prove their worth during VEGA’s Udvalgte 2015. Good because Danish’s ambassadors grabbed a cold Tuborg and joined the anticipated crowd.
Upstairs in VEGA’s lounge, wearing obvious 80’s influences on their sleeve, First Hate‘s double keyboard setup provided a solid start to our evening. While the two threw a lot of dark “Depeche Mode-esque” energy into their set, it took a while for the sizeable crowd to warm up. At least the part of it, who (just like ourselves) sadly had missed out on the heating garagepunk of girl trio The Felines before, and was possibly still busy thawing from Copenhagen’s winter chill.
ANYA, as second act on the Lille VEGA stage possessed enough presence to rock a venue twice the size. Though a fresh act, it seemed the packed room knew most of the words. ANYA lays down lyrics with relatable subjects; complicated love and missed opportunities, delivered with effortlessly smooth R’n’B vocals. When new single “Need to Know” rolled around, the sheer amount of people joining in was a testament to her appeal. ANYA has a genuine, warm charm, one that can’t be taught.
Again in the VEGA Lounge, the change of vibe was vast. Gone were the carefree whims of ANYA, replaced instead with the dark melodies of SAINT CAVA (who played as stand-in for ENA). Vocalist Erika Casier writhed around onstage, these impassioned movements becoming as much of the act as the music. Credit to the light person, as the performance was equally impressive in visuals as it was in sound. The sound was reminiscent of queen of icy pop Kill J, but the duo stood apart with a grimier edge, Casier’s voice slicing through the dark, distorted beats.
The evening was in full swing as Kwamie Liv arrived on stage of a packed Lille VEGA, immersed in bold colours. She prowled, owning her audience with an expressionless cool. Just like the ladies before or – in terms of mystery Mendoza, after, Kwamie Liv’s performance proved, how well “girl power” seemed to work as general caption for the whole night.
After several discussions especially last year, about a male dominance in the (Danish) music scene, it was very refreshing to see, how well tonight’s women managed to keep a great party going. A good, encouraging sign for the future, and for an even more equal and diverse music year 2015!
Photos by Nick McKinlay