Blake – Wine Cellar: October 13, 2022 (Concert Review)

Blake made her Auckland concert debut last night at the Wine Cellar celebrating the release of her new EP, Skeptical.

Rushing to Krd from a film screening in Newmarket, I missed opening act Katie-Lee (still trying to be at two places at once), but I arrived just in time catch all of Blake’s set.

Originally from Queenstown, Blake is (or was) Sarah Foley. Sarah spent time in the UK  ‘honing her craft and immersing herself in the rich music London scene. During her time in London, she was sought out by some of the UK’s top drum and bass producers to write and record vocals in the genre. She was nominated for ‘Best Vocalist’ at the 2017 Drum and Bass awards and has over 5 million streams on Spotify on her feature tracks, with releases across Hospital Records and Shogun Audio.’ Or so says her bio.

Now Blake is based in Auckland and her 4-song EP, Skeptical is just released.

“How Is everybody”, perched behind a keyboard, stage left, Blake addresses the audience full of friends, fans and family, while bass player “James” stands solemnly to the right.

First song up is something called Botulinum; also called “miracle poison’, it is one of the most poisonous biological substances known (thank you Google)…but I have a feeling Blake has someone in mind here, not something.

Despite the subject matter, the mood is light and cheerful as Blake moves on to Easier Way, a song she wrote for a friend “Kate” who broke up with her boyfriend. I won’t go into detail here other than to say Blake does a fine job of giving insights to the songs allowing the audience deeper meaning without babbling on as some tend to.

We were treated to two other non-EP tunes, Minds Like Mine and Where R All The Men, as Blake moved away from behind the keyboard and took centre stage. The latter tune found James laying down a danceable bassline that got some movement going in the crowd.

CPU closed out the 30-minute set, with Blake thanking her mum, who travelled up from Queenstown to support her daughter.

I’m sure we’ll be hearing more from Blake…so keep an eye and an ear out.

Marty Duda

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Blake setlist:

  1. Botulinum
  2. Easier Way
  3. You Don’t Decide
  4. Minds Like Mine
  5. Skeptical
  6. Damn
  7. Where R All The Men
  8. CPU