Her spring concert in Paradiso and this summer’s festival shows already showed this: singer Froukje is going to take a leap. When the time comes, 6,000 people in the AFAS Live, she is silent for a while because of the size. Laughing, slightly dazed: “There are so many of you. I don’t really know what to do with it.”
For a moment there is the memory of the period when Froukje Veenstra from Nieuwkoop could not imagine her audience at all. The breakthrough came unexpectedly, in the first corona year 2020. ‘Greater Than Me’, a danceable, fresh-realistic song about climate unrest. With ‘Ik Wil Dansen’ she dragged young people through a concertless vacuum.
As the timid opening act of the test event ‘Back to Life’, Froukje sang live for the first time in 2021. With her striking sobriety and the beautiful pen with which she captured her insecurities in songs, she then made her way through the pop landscape. There were video clips, awards, two EPs. And more and more performances.
And so the contrast can – only a year and a half later! – no bigger. A self-confident pop woman now shines on a wide stage with a large video wall and an elevation for her four-piece band. One that dares more, that puts on a show with speed, based on electropop. The music production: solid, well thought out, with fresh modern lighting. Tonight 21-year-old Froukje in a white outfit seals her year of success.
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Her vulnerability, gloomy themes in an eloquent package on beats, touches on all sides. “I don’t remember who I was before it all started. I also don’t know what I am now except young, brash,” she sings. Her songs have been pumped up and expanded through remixes: they last longer, sometimes distort her voice and make the audience jump even harder.
Outrageous is the keyword – after her latest EP. The hall sways and with a sense of drama, Froukje kneels in white light. At ‘Between Light and Dark’ the audience eagerly lets the telephone lights shine.
But it can also be small. And moving. Very professionally she urges the audience to form a path, she wants to go to the mini stage in the middle of the hall. There awaits her father (“with whom I have shared a passion for music all my life. Without him I would never have been here.”) with guitar for a duet: a fragile ‘A Sign’. Solo then a new song ‘Ik Ben Bang’, a beautiful gem, almost cabaret.
Speaking of contrasts, quite astonishing is the hellfire she later ignites. Screaming guitars against flames in the thumping ‘Is This Really?’ Cliché, but hey, is that bad? This is brand new for her target audience. As on the duet after, ‘Zonder Face’ with the equally popular S10, now every concert can be counted. Froukje has mastered the show finesse. Curious what her debut album, now finally in sight, will bring.
A version of this article also appeared in the newspaper of October 17, 2022