In the hustle and bustle of London city life, Shepherds Bush played host to a warming night in, people sat ready to absorb the beautiful music of Ry X. The Australian songwriter/musician’s social media posts throughout the week have suggested that his short string of UK shows would be something special and by no means did he let us down. Forget the tube, forget barging through crowds, just sit down and relax, because Ry X is here to soothe your soul.
Opening the night is Josin, a sweetly hypnotic composer and producer who embodies the whole entity of her performance. Lost in her own creations, she draws us into her mystical air with grace, creating a romantic ambiance as she flows theatrically with her music. Her beautiful soul shines through the enigmatic performance, every beat striking from the heart and each rhythm flowing from all of her instruments through her body – it all feels extremely personal. Every little bit of her set is purposeful, nothing wasted, everything has an impact, whether it’s the powerful tone of her vocals or the eclectic synth beats.
Josin’s set is the perfect taster for Ry X, whose set starts with an instrumental of violins as Cuming’s silhouette appears on stage. Within seconds he has taken the seated crowd into stunned silence, the sheer beauty of his music bursting through the room. Whether or not it’s the nature of a sit-down show, there’s a surreal tone in Shepherd’s Bush Empire. A striking silence in the seats comes in response to the powerful set from the stage. Vocals buzz as each chord plays with an overwhelming amount of emotion, the nature of his set quite harrowing at times as he creates a trance in which even thoughts and feelings dredged from distance memories cross the mind. Ry X enchants the venue with old songs and new on a dimly lit stage, creating an overall haunting atmosphere, managing to make you feel like the only person watching, even in a room full of devoted fans.
The whole night is better than ever imagined. As the final songs come into play, Ry X suggests that it’s about time everyone stands up, noting how wonderful it is, that even with so many bad things going on the world, people can come together, near or far, to put it aside and enjoy a night of beautiful music. His music takes us out of everyday life and places us in a moment of stunning splendour, a moment we only wish could last forever.
Before the night is over, Ry X himself is taken into silence by the sheer love and adoration of his fans, who stand there in continuous applause. This is clearly a man who can’t quite believe the effect he has on these people and that’s all part of the magic; the emotionally charged energy of his set is real, from his heart to ours.