Speech Debelle Toronto, ON March 10

Speech Debelle Toronto, ON March 10
While the title of Mercury Prize winner certainly guaranteed Brit MC Speech Debelle would at least be respectable on stage, few in the audience could likely have been prepared for the level of style, swagger and performance maturity displayed in her Toronto debut. As engaging in her between-song banter as she was in full lyrical flight, the fresh-faced rhyme-slinger filled the room with the charm that no doubt earned her top prize, often cracking wise when she wasn't dropping knowledge. Completely in lock-step with her players at every turn, Debelle added even more potency to weighty cuts like "Bad Boy," "Wheels In Motion" and torch song "Go Then Bye," leaving her rising start status entirely solidified by night's end.