Escaping the hustle and bustle of Shepherds Bush, a handful of lucky guests descended, surreptitiously, into a basement kitchen outside St. Stephen's Church - otherwise known as TOMS Exclusive Location.
Welcoming strangers into his humble abode, a cheery chap by the name of Joe led us into the back garden. Teaming up with Bushstock once again this year, this garden plays host to the quaint Secret Garden Stage. Hosting three intimate performances, only a handful of guests are invited to each acoustic show. In fact, it's an environment rife with musical history, uniquely matching the ethos of Communion and Bushstock; Marcus Mumford once lived here, as did Laura Marling, The Staves and Bear's Den.
Guests quickly took to the wooden benches neatly lining the small space, vases filled with flowers hung from trees and lightbulbs lined the stage. A background hum of soothing jazz and soul filled the air, whilst Luke Sital-Singh looked on from above.
The bespectacled Londoner looked rather timid as he made his way cautiously to the make-shift stage, though his charmful demeanour soon had the guests enthralled.
Opening with the quietly momentous 'Greatest Lovers', Singh's emotive lyricism is beautifully carried over nimbly plucked guitar. A romantic ode to his wife, the track showcases his gentle, tremulous voice sublimely.
‘Bottled Up Tight’, taken from 2013’s 'Old Flint EP' follows, with its gentle honesty building to a raspy, soaring chorus, bursting with passion and emotional heft.
The outing of infectious new song, '21st Century Heartbeat' is a welcome switch from the fragility of previous songs; with its propulsive sense of euphoria yet ever heartfelt lyrics.
Anthemic offering ‘Nothing Stays the Same’, showcases his quivering falsetto and cascading guitar licks before reaching an emphatic climax.
“Thanks for hanging out in this little garden with me,” Singh addresses the small audience as though we’re old friends, before returning with his trademark confessional intimacy and set closer, ‘Fail For You’.
The perfect complement to such an intimate setting, Singh’s voice further cements him as one of the brightest new talents and points towards big things for his debut album, due in August.
Words: Hannah Daisy