03 March 2020 (gig)
12 March 2020
This evening kicks off Jake Bugg’s latest string of tour dates on the back of his most recent offering, ‘Kiss Like The Sun’. Back to basics, its 70’s folk-rock influence is an ideal addition to his already accomplished back catalogue. Buy tickets below.
Upon arrival, Brighton’s Dome venue appears a wise choice. Easy on the eyes with its 1850’s decor mixed with an abundance of space, I’m suitably impressed. And Jake’s yet to strum a chord. To the bar we go.
The venue fills as latecomers rush to their seats grasping their drinks like a newborn. Darkness falls as 9pm is Jake’s calling card. Arriving onstage to ‘Be Someone’, last year’s dance collaboration with CamelPhat. It’s an array of orange lights and dropping beats. A lively start.
Dance beats conclude and guitars commence. We’re back to his indie roots as ‘Trouble Town’ gently reminds Brighton’s buoyant crowd why they adore him. A redundant reminder? You bet.
The 90 minute set is largely comprised of his 2012 eponymous LP. Still only eight years young and already an indie classic, it illustrates Jake’s profound talents. From the lyrics and melodies to the vocals and the playing. He’s got it all.
Electric down and acoustic on, tracks such as ‘Slide’ and the gorgeous ‘Broken’ portray Jake’s voice at its optimum. The clarity and power is sumptuous. Has someone put the vinyl on?
‘Taste It’ and ‘Slumville Sunrise’ from 2013’s ‘Shangri La’ LP lift the tempo and the volume with it, as the crowd respond in kind. It’s getting animated at the front. Observing with admiration from the comfort of my seat, I feel content. Or perhaps just old.
Expectations are all but met as tonight’s collection of songs allow for countless mass singalongs. ‘Lightning Bolt’ and ‘Seen It All’ to name just two. Newbies also feature as we are left with whet appetites following set debutants. Something to look forward too.
Jake’s willingness to interact with the crowd as song requests are repeatedly hurled his way is commendable. Between regular swigs of his now presumably warm beer he laughs and jokes. Never omitting his thanks along the way.
It’s worth reiterating the impeccable pitch and precision of Jake’s live vocals. In a world where lip syncing is ostensibly now the norm, it’s invigorating to hear.
‘Simple Pleasures’ acts as this evening’s penultimate sing along as the set draws to its imminent yet unwanted finale. Jake ‘Lights a cigarette and wishes the world away’, leaving us with ‘Two Fingers’.
No two fingers from me. Just a big thumbs up.
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