For those of you in on a Friday night, you should definitely watch ‘SING’ on Sky One at 9pm. It’s been on for two weeks now and both episodes haven’t disappointed. The host is Cat Deeley (who is a fellow Midlander so I’m quite a fan) and the a cappella group Sons of Pitches, who sing the soundtrack live throughout the show are phenomenal.
The previous week saw Elle and the Pocket Belles and Semi-Toned battle it out for the winning place. Semi-Toned took the lead, which is a shame as not only do I know Elle and the Pocket Belles well but I also think they were the tightest and most versatile group. I’ve worked on the same circuit as them for the last few years and I also happen to book them for the Retro Festival too. They are talented but also lovely girls who work really hard and deserve all the success that I’m sure is coming their way.
In the most recent episode we saw 5 bands battle it out with no backing tracks or instruments, just voices. First up were Choral Stimulation. They had an all-round solid and full sound. They made use of the different roles within the act and the bass voice was great. The female lead had an awesome voice and the second song they sang really suited her.
Second up were WE3. This trio were well polished and clearly had made use of their time performing on cruise ships but for me, the lead song was very nasal and a bit too cheesy. He was better in their second song but I really didn’t rate him which is a shame because the other two were great on the backing vocals and beat boxing.
The Gold Collective followed and they stood out as having the best vocals so far. There was a lot of diversity in the group and strong harmonies. Their second song allowed them to stand out even further and was more current, proving how versatile they can be.
The next a cappella group, Fayre, sang an original composition. It was a mellow tune and pleasing on the ear. The group lacked energy and I found myself getting bored halfway through but the lead singer had a beautiful voice nevertheless. I couldn’t help feeling the same in their second song too and kept wanting something interesting to happen, to no avail.
The final group, The Stereoettes, had a very glamorous look and strong individual voices. I’m not convinced their voices blended that well together and the judges must have felt the same, as they were voted out in the first round. The second round saw the demise of Chorus Stimulation and Fayre, leaving WE3 and The Gold Collective to battle it out in the final round.
Viewers also got the chance to watch a stunning performance by Imelda May. She totally carried her own in this a cappella show and the arrangement showcased complete originality within the U2 classic she chose to sing. Her vocal range was impressive and her pitch never faltered. An absolute treat to watch.
Unlike the next song, where WE3 went back to being cheesier than ever (and I’m partial to a bit of cheese now and then) to a point where I just wanted it to end. Any kind of competition went out of the window as soon as The Gold Collective’s lead singer opened his mouth. His voice was insane and this was the first time we’d heard him take lead too, proving they have more than one talented singer in their group. The glissando he sang at the end of the song was incredible and went through about three octaves. I really could have listened to him all day. Not surprisingly, The Gold Collective won the highest score and will be going through to compete for the chance to record their own album at Abbey Road Studios.
Having formed and worked with my own a cappella group for 5 years, it’s not a secret that I love working with the voice and seeing what sounds can be created from just harmonies, rhythms and dynamics. I’m now sharing my experiences with my own Glee Club and we’ve been working on our own a cappella versions of well known hits. Glee Club is just one of the classes available at my Theatre School, Pixie Studios. We’re looking for new members to join our Wednesday class in St Albans, 6-7pm so if you’re age 10 – 16 and love singing please get in touch. My next blog will be talking all things ‘Strictly’, so if you have any views/favourites about this months most talked about Saturday night show, please get in touch!
Miss Nicola Anne x