Live Review: Girli – o2 Academy, Leicester 22.11.2021 plus gallery

We’re in for a very different night tonight; with support from July Jones & Sizzy Rocket, this self funded, predominantly ladies & LGBTQ+ event is definitely one of a kind. The smaller than expected audience turns this into the intimate gig that we didn’t know we needed. Both Sizzy Rocket and July Jones have to work hard to get the small crowd to warm up to them but their music was known scattered throughout the audience. A technical glitch during July’s set doesn’t stop her for long; a quick fix of the wire and restarting the song gets her back into the swing of things and it’s soon forgotten.

People flow in and out of the room due to Ms Jones promising the signing of boobs if merch is purchased and as time ticks on, everyone makes their way back to the stage. The room falls silent as the lights dim and is then quickly filled with cheers as Girli makes her way center stage. It takes a moment for the onlookers to get back into the vibe of the evening due to the coldness that has crept into the room but after Girli asks for everyone’s weirdest dance moves during ‘Dysmorphia’, there’s no doubt that the mood is back.

Arguably, ‘Not That Girl’ is the audience’s favourite; a brief description of the song is that it’s a great big f*ck off to people who think they have a right to say what they want about the way you look and it hits home to a lot of people.
“Sign my tits” is shouted from the crowd and we’re quickly promised more boob signing at the merch stand (as long as you have you’re ID as Girli is not about to cancel herself for signing some underage boobs). The independent artist has clear loyalty from her audience and one of her oldest songs, ‘Girl I Met On The Internet’, has everyone singing as loud as they can with all hands held high, swaying from left to right. Girli is a clearly talented vocalist and you can feel the love in the room and understanding. We’re in a safe space.

‘Ruthless’ is prefaced with a story about how this punk in pink artist was dropped by her record label a few years ago and how she spent most of her time thinking about giving up and becoming a dog trainer; a quirky story that gets everyone prepared for what’s to come. Quickly followed by ‘Friday Night Big Screen’ has Girli enjoying herself. ’10pm Bedtime’ & ‘Young’ are part of this eclectic discography and gets the best dance moves of the evening. One small question let’s the people know what they’re in for: “Are you ready to get messy?!” ‘Hot Mess’ is a different sound from most of the evening but definitely fits in with some ‘Kate Nash’ influences and get a head bobbing and foot tapping beat to it. There’s a swift stage exit from Girli and her co-singer before “one more song” is echoed through the room and they treat us to a little extra bite. The night ends on a high and there’s not a person who leaves disappointed. We’re all excited for more Girli.

Previous Premiere: Robotikus is 'Out Of Love' - a shimmering disco pop collaboration with KOWL and Calypso from the outer reaches of the world.
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