At first, Mura Masa aka Alex Crossan looks like someone forced into the one-man-band role without much of a choice. The Guernsey producer has a laptop on one side, keys on the other, and a cymbal to smash in case he gets frustrated, presumably. That’s on first glance. What follows is a magnetic showcase of how to achieve a great deal with very few tools.
After a couple of songs, the 20-year-old tells the crowd “I know it’s hot, but you’ve gotta move a little bit more than that.” The power of persuasion looks to have worked. Within seconds, kids are standing on each other’s hands, a circle pit forming at one point. To be fair, Crossan’s cause is helped by guest vocalist Bonzai, who takes centre stage for half of the set. On his own, Mura Masa brings highs with sharp, hyperactive beatwork (he’s a dab hand at piano, too). With Bonzai, the pair give the 6 Music tent exactly the kind of party it’s been waiting for.
Far from a one-man-band affair, this is a set that goes way behind a laptop-hugging default. Plenty of producers stick to the basics when they’re starting out. A big label budget obviously helps, but Mura Masa is doing a fine job of going for the jugular.
Photos: Sarah Louise Bennett.