John Bramwell, gig review
Half Moon, London
Thursday 13 February 2014
“It's been different this evening and I will certainly not forget it,” quips John Bramwell during a solo acoustic show beset with technical difficulties. Three songs into the set and the Mancunian has to abandon his guitar and enforce a drinks interval.
The I Am Kloot frontman returns with a new guitar and a rather ramshackle performance, full of wit and passion. Bramwell, along with Paul Heaton, Neil Hannon and Billy Bragg, is one of our most finest lyricists. The 49-year-old specialises in bruised, ale-stained laments that deal in sorrow, regret and (particularly) the UK climate. His generous set is ideally suited to the tempest outside.
“Is there a storm coming or are we just another shower,” sings John Bramwell, in his deliciously cracked voice, on the apt “Storm Warning”. It's a highlight tonight along with the menacing “Twist” (“There was a time when we were filled with laughter/ Haplessly hoping happy ever after/ Did we string up a heart, let it swing from the rafters/ And bleed”) and the McCartney-esque “Some Better Day” from Kloot's latest world weary album, Let It All In.
At one point Bramwell jokes that we probably miss his band. A little bit, but the singer's drollery, astringent lyrics and exquisite voice pull us through.
Final Top Gear reviewTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Michelle Watt's father says TV presenter killed herself because she was in constant pain
- 2 Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
- 3 'Help me I'm trapped in a factory' messages keep being found on bottles of vitamin water
- 4 North Korean defector flees to Finland 'with evidence of chemical testing on humans'
- 5 Greek debt crisis: The photograph that conveys the despair of Greece's elderly
Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture