Musical ance often belongs to a dimly lit club or boisterous carnival tent rather than the Royal Albert Hall. But LA-based British producer Simon Green, better known as Bonobo, is performing a five-night stay at the prestigious venue after a string of resounding successes.
Where some dance repertoire relies on shuddering volumes and relentless beats to keep the audience submissive, the Grammy-nominated Green comes with strings and a full band that includes trumpet musicians. trombone, drums, trumpet and flute.
Emerging to cheers on this opening night, he stands slightly behind various consoles and controls an array of electronic sounds, while occasionally grappling with a bass guitar. A giant screen above the stage projects placid coastal vistas to the soundtrack of glittering grooves and meditative music that won’t be missed during a yoga retreat.
There are teasing hints of clattering rhythms as vocalist Nicole Miglis sings through From You’s shimmering compilation from the recent top 5 Fragment Bonobo album. Still, it’s a well-thought-out introduction, even as the band tweaked the Shadows’ seasoned sleepy tunes with elements of jazz, funk, and deep house.
However, when the crumbling beats collided with the rising brass on the Kiara from the 2010 classic Black Sands album, audiences immediately understood the cues to get out of their seats.
With a stage filled with dry ice and blue light, the performance quickly gained momentum as the Royal Albert Hall turned into a frenzy with fans holding their arms overhead. Green began drumming in more belligerent tunes. Even at its most energetic, however, there are lush textures and intricate equipment on beloved tracks such as Beguiling Cirrus.
“I’ve been looking forward to these shows for a long time,” said Green, who seemed genuinely thrilled to be playing her first show in the capital in four years. While audiences yearned for more Bonobo bangs, he paced himself and the band appropriately by introducing Miglis and fellow guest vocalist Jamila Woods, who accompanied the band. rope in the Tides trip-hop trip.
The climax comes with the new tune Otomo, which features a beautiful Bulgarian choir prototype as a contrast to the track’s almighty bass – an audience-pleasing finale that always fails to reach. to the top.
Bonobo and the band are back with an encore, though self-indulgence has snuck in with at least one too much empty solo.
Overall, though, Green has raised the bar for its immersive club sound with emotional infusion from a trusted team of talented musicians and singers. Bonobo and his band are at the height of their power at this iconic venue.
Royal Albert Hall, through Friday, May 2; royalalberthall.com