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Music Editorial

keleokerek19.jpg Special K

The Bloc Party frontman Kele Okereke released one of 2019’s most bracing albums in ‘2042’ and he’ll no doubt be regaling us with songs from it on his latest tour which swings by Newcastle in early February.

Kele Okereke is a sonic butterfly, a man who is utterly unpigeonholeable (yep, I’m coining that). He perfected a kind of indie-clattering-rock sound with Bloc Party but, if anything, his solo stuff is even more interesting. Among the good stuff is a series of lo-fi dance records; soul-baring folk album ‘Fatherland’; and, in 2019, a musical, ‘Leave to Remain’, which called for equal marriage against a beaty backdrop of dance sounds and west African high life. For ‘2042’, his fourth solo release, he let all of his disparate personalities flow into an album that took in everything from affecting ballads to neo-soul. It’s also political referencing Grenfell, the Windrush scandal and Colin Kaepernick (the US football player who refused to stand during the national anthem). It’s urgent, necessary and demands to be heard live, which is handy, as he’s playing at The Cluny in February. I’m so there, dude, it’s unreal.

Kele Okereke, Tuesday 4 February, The Cluny, Ouseburn, Newcastle, 7.30pm, £16. thecluny.com