SOLANGE, XOYO – Evening Standard, 17 Jan 2013

Unlike Venus and Serena Williams, there has only ever been one dominant Knowles sister. While Beyoncé was busy being named “Miss Millennium” on the cover of American GQ’s latest sexiest women countdown, Solange, younger by five years, was shaking her thing in this little east London nightclub.

Having previously occupied similar glossy soul territory and even performed with Destiny’s Child, today Solange seems to have stopped playing her sister’s game. Now without a major label record deal and sporting a casual afro (though still looking like a supermodel) she’s making understated electronic pop with an Englishman known, if at all, as a member of appallingly named art rock jokers Test Icicles.

Dev Hynes offered intricate guitar lines, one rap and the odd synchronised dance move in what was only Solange’s new band’s fourth gig. The songs came mostly from a recent EP co-written with Hynes, though her third album is on the way.

And they were good, with none of the bombast and showboating of mainstream R&B. Lovers in the Parking Lot was funky and slick. Look Good with Trouble had a dreamy, late night feel. Losing You was the brightest tune but even that felt restrained. She may be playing second fiddle but now it sounds lovely.

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