If you are not familiar with Kristyna Myles’ music – you need to be!

We were fortunate enough to attend Kristyna’s album launch at the Deaf Institute and were left in absolutely no doubt as to her amazing talent.

Three fantastic bands and artists supported the Kristyna Myles gig – Miss 600, Sam Gray and Bird to Beast.

First up incredible Derby duo Miss 600 (Hannah Garner and David Amar). Miss 600 have enjoyed increasing exposure and seen their reputation grow over the last few years, their singles Twist and Typically Me both being championed by BBC Radio 2. They have also hit the spotlight is more unconventional ways, performing live on Poland’s version of “Dancing With The Stars” and even unexpectedly catching their music being used on Crufts! With their mix of jazz/pop/blues/electro-swing, Miss600 put on a wonderful live performance. A second studio album ‘Swing Ting’ is expected in 2014 – make a beeline for it and any chance you get to see them live!

Next up was Sam Gray. With two albums to his name, Hull-born Manchester based Sam Gray, showed his talents for singing and songwriting, armed with just a guitar and a microphone in a great acoustic set. Counting his inspirations as including the likes of Simon and Garfunkel and Stevie Wonder, his music is clearly ‘retro-inspired’, catchy and intoxicating. It was also no surprise that his performance left the females in the crowd swooning.

The final act before Kristyna, was married folk duo Bird to Beast, from Colne, whose vocals and harmonies were second to none. Listing their inspirations as including French pop, Andrew Bird, Kate Bush, Nic Jones, Rufus Wainwright and more, and with an album described as the ‘best album of 2013’ by the Manchester Evening News, Bird to Beast were fresh from an appearance on BBC Radio 6. Playing a great set and with good humour, Bird to Beast are definitely an act to catch live.

Then came the marquee moment as Kristyna took to the stage to perform her debut album in full.

What followed was a stirring display of musical ability and agility before an enthralled crowd.

Drawing on influences such as India.Arie, Lauryn Hill and Stevie Wonder, her music is soulful, with clear jazz and pop influences. With no weak links, the album is a stunning collection of tracks from a singer-songwriter clearly passionate about her music and performance, showing genuine enthusiasm and a complete lack of pretention. Kristyna performs on stage with a professionalism which belies the fact that this is her debut album.

Kristyna took fans through a range of styles from ballads such as Three Little Words, and soulful delight Sorrow through to anthemic I’m Not Going Back via a hauntingly beautiful version of The Style Council’s The Paris Match, approved of by Paul Weller himself. Her music is very personal, drawing frequently on her own experiences to form a very intimate album.

Interacting with the fans with ease, mingling throughout the evening, Kristyna was clearly in her element and relishing every moment, as were all in attendance.

With a phenomenal album and incredible live performance incorporating immense vocal ability, stage presence and charisma which would be the envy of many artists several albums along, Kristyna is clearly an artist to follow. If you get the opportunity to see her live, grab yourself a ticket!

Kristyna Myles’ album Pinch Me Quick is out now.

image courtesy Jack Kirwin