Nick's Blog

Personal posts on the things I see and do

Review: Tinchy Stryder, Edinburgh

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Tinchy Stryder makes no secret of the fact he is one of the smallest people in the music business. The pseudonym, he says, comes from a nickname afforded due to the fact that he is a tiny 5’1”. But that’s not to say the ego that comes with being a fairly regular mainstay of British rap and his own clothing brand indicate this is something he feels uncomfortable about. As one of the first to make his name from the crowd that has now spawned Professor Green, Tinie Tempah and Example, Tinchy is far from stunted as far as musical accomplishments go.

Tonight however, size, or lack of it, is not on his side. Despite the name recognition Stryder has and the relative shelf life that his previous hits (Number 1, You’re Not Alone, Take Me Back et al.) have given him, the Picture House is embarrassingly empty. The venue has given Edinburgh the much-needed capacity to host more established artists in the capital, but at around a third full for a self-proclaimed ‘Star in the Hood’, its hard not to question why Stryder didn’t opt for a venue that is a bit, well, smaller.

Not that our host for the evening seems to take much notice. Swaggering onto the stage clad in sunglasses and flanked by his usual troupe, many of whom are sporting products from the main attraction’s clothing range, the venue might as well be full for the energy Tinchy puts into his show.

The crowd, in part, reciprocate this enthusiasm. The 200 or so Tinchy diehards at the front are unfazed by their diminutive number and are evidently enamoured by Stryder’s performance. The rest of us perk up a bit when the hits are rolled out, though there is a feeling that a striking lack of atmosphere combines with a minimal knowledge of Tinchy’s music beyond his better publicised singles, to make for an uncomfortable time for some.

There seems little worth in discussing the merits of Tinchy’s artistic talents- if you don’t like British rappers who take themselves seriously, it’s unlikely one of them doing just that will change your mind. Tinchy shows tonight that he can rap and that he is an engaging live performer for the most part.

But the cringe effect of him standing in front of a minimal crowd asking “You louder than London?” makes it hard not to think that Tinchy might be a bit big for his boots tonight. Maybe this just isn’t his scene?


Written by Nick Eardley

November 9, 2010 at 4:51 pm

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