Jimi Goodwin @ Sugarmill 04/04/14

First to grace the Sugarmill stage, on what was a remarkably mild Friday night; Moitessier. I’m not quite sure if its extraction is French. Not even sure if Moitessier is a genuine word in any language at all, at least that’s what a brief Google Translate search seems to suggest. However one thing I am unequivocally certain of; is their aptitude to stage a sincerely mesmeric performance. There’s a thriving multitude of country/folk rock influenced artists in the local scene; but none seize the authentic elements of the genre and inject them with a brutal sting of Rock’n’Roll like Moitessier. Baby, I Need Your Love was undoubtedly the most prominent example of this; and in all honesty, the initial 30 seconds of the song; with its humbling melodies and soft tones spawned reverberating screams of “Ballad Alert, Ballad Alert!” ricocheting frenziedly inside my head, only for my premature assumptions to be shattered by wrenching guitars and robust vocals which encapsulate the overall sound of Moitessier. First to grace the Sugarmill stage, on what was a remarkably mild Friday night; Moitessier. I’m not quite sure if its extraction is French. Not even sure if Moitessier is a genuine word in any language at all, at least that’s what a brief Google Translate search seems to suggest. However one thing I am unequivocally certain of; is their aptitude to stage a sincerely mesmeric performance. There’s a thriving multitude of country/folk rock influenced artists in the local scene; but none seize the authentic elements of the genre and inject them with a brutal sting of Rock’n’Roll like Moitessier. Baby, I Need Your Love was undoubtedly the most prominent example of this; and in all honesty, the initial 30 seconds of the song; with its humbling melodies and soft tones spawned reverberating screams of “Ballad Alert, Ballad Alert!” ricocheting frenziedly inside my head, only for my premature assumptions to be shattered by wrenching guitars and robust vocals which encapsulate the overall sound of Moitessier.

Next up, CAMP STAG. With a 2013 Glastonbury appearance and national air time on BBC 6 Music and XFM under their belt, it was nothing short of a privilege to see the local 5 piece prime the Sugarmill following who were eagerly awaiting headliner Jimi Goodwin. But back to CAMP STAG, their sound is just entirely unique; it’s tremendously unpractical to even embark on such an audacious quest, tampering with a ‘mish-mash’ of adjectives, attempting to describe it, but shall I have a go anyway? Thrillingly futuristic yet captivatingly contemporary, that truly captures the essence of CAMP STAG for me. And with songs like Sirens and latest single; Hide And Seek which both boast intricately crafted vocals that interlude into rampant spells of hectic instrumentals, it’s hard not to predict an even further flourishing future for these local talents.

Here it was, the moment that left me with literally no space to manoeuvre my legs at all, in other words; the Sugarmill was packed and Doves man Jimi Goodwin’s emergence to the stage was rapidly looming. Giving Jimi Goodwin’s debut solo album Odludek a pre-listen ahead of the gig was possibly the best decision I could have made; not only did I adore the album and felt wholly absorbed by the raw emotion instilled deeply into the roots of every track, it gifted me the complete appreciation of how unfailingly every song was replicated flawlessly. Don’t even dare try and coerce me into the futile endeavour of ‘picking a favourite!’ from the night – That’s virtually impossible! There’s Terracotta Warrior which instantaneously clutches you with pulsing brass-like synth that torments and teases in an everlasting build, Live Like A River that launches into a vicious and energetic electric riff which glides into rises and falls to complement the passion in Goodwin’s voice, or Oh! Whiskey; exchanging any electrical influence for a tranquil acoustic melody, a radical diversion in sound considering the previous two tracks, but all the more spellbinding. Touring with Elbow this month (and no wonder too!) Jimi Goodwin is absolute compulsive listening and totally unmissable!

 

FS

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