Imperial Leisure @ Scala, London – 23rd October

Imperial Leisure
+ The RGBs / Barefoot Confessor / Laid Blak
plus special guests Mr. B

23rd October
Scala, Kings Cross

Imperial Leisure are a phenomenon: a ten-piece band playing their own particular blend of hip-hop, ska and rock music, complete with live brass section, keyboards, DJ, two MCs and a singer, who have been mates since North London secondary school, and in some cases, primary school. Their music is a killer combination of great beats, great tunes and irresistibly memorable lyrics.

Influences come from all over the place: as well as a group admiration of great British bands such as The Specials, Madness and The Prodigy, there is a Motown-inspired soulfulness to singer Jel's vocals, and a rock sensibility to MC Denis's delivery.

The sense of unity and familiarity that comes from 15 years of friendship and hanging out together is very much evident both in the band's sound and in the relationships between members. Based in their own rehearsal/recording studio in Wood Green, they work together and party together, and put equal energy into both things. This energy is what sets the band apart on stage: electric performances at festivals around the country supporting bands such as The Happy Mondays and The Levellers, and at venues from the Water Rats to the Shepherd's Bush Empire have inspired the following comments:

'Like the Beasties and De La Soul, playing Less Than Jake at a cult-rock party with the best cover I've heard in ages. Amazing live band.'(SA)

“…all you can do is pity the fools that came in late.” London Metro

'This band had an air of something unusual and interesting even before they play a note. Imperial Leisure definitely have a stage presence which is quickly established by the Afro-haired rapper who seems to have had his legs replaced by pogo sticks. It is quite evident that these guys remember the most important thing about what they do, having fun. Aside from the energy and humour, this band remains intelligent, versatile and melodic.'

'you have a band capable of captivating any

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