The Vienna-born singer Maria Neckam travelled to New York eight years ago, studied at the Manhattan School, and has now lived there ever since. This interesting singer-songwriter has just two London gigs with a UK band before heading off. Uninhibited, fearless,highly musical -more adjectives and plaudits HERE.
I heard her first set at Charlie Wright's in Hoxton, and recommend the more intimate - and cheaper - setting of the Austrian Cultural Forum for an early evening (7pm yes 7pm) gig tonight. She's with a band any singer would be proud to work with: Kit Downes will be playing on the Forum's far better piano tonight, for starters. Neckam's fellow Austrian Hannes Riepler (he's from Innsbuck at the opposite end of the country) was on fine form on guitar, and Tom Farmer was not just on bass, but also excellent backing vocals (sic). Tim Giles was impeccable at Charlie Wright's, but won't be at the ACF.
Maria Neckam's songs are moving in a poppier, rockier, simpler direction. I particularly enjoyed the directness of expression of a new song I Had a Love. It's a song in three time, analyzing why a relationship has gone wrong. I'd written down 'Freudian Waltz.'. I'll probably regret it: Maria Neckam completely rejected my idea that as a born Viennese the Dreivierteltakt should come quite so naturally to her.
Make up your own mind without shelling out a penny : events at the Austrian Cultural Forum (28 Rutland Gate, London SW7 1PQ /Phone:020 7225 7300 / Twitter @ACF_London ) are completely free. The ACF website www.acflondon.org is currently down.