26 May 2013

26th May - Johnny Flynn's A Larum

Artist – Album: Johnny Flynn – A Larum
Released:  26th May 2008
Sounds Like: Way better than bloody Mumford & Sons

I’m in Nottingham today for the annual Dot-to-Dot festival, check me out! Now played out over a long weekend in dozens of venues across three different cities, the festival began here 8 years ago at just three clubs. Since then it has garnered a great reputation as a place to see loads of great new bands and potentially spot the next big thing – the list of bands to have played it is like a who’s who of buzzed about indie and pop acts of the last few years: The Drums, Ed Sheeran, Darwin Deez, Hurts, Guillemots, Mystery Jets, Los Campesinos!, Beach House, Friendly Fires, Spiritualised, Bloc Party, Hercules and Love Affair, Ellie Goulding, British Sea Power, Kate Nash, Alphabeat and Noah and the Whale. Who’ll be the next one? The 1975? Tom Odell? Dry the River? Wave Machines? I haven’t got a clue, I’ve barely heard of any of them...

Speaking of obscure indie acts of note, today’s album is by Johnny Flynn, a star of the revitalised folk rock scene. His highly literate wordplay, distinctive, olde-worlde voice and energetically plucked acoustic guitar mark him out as one to watch. The stomping ‘The Box’ contains enough interesting variations, screeching violins, and a catchy enough chanted chorus to warrant repeated listens (in fact, Cartoonist David Rees listened to it non-stop on itunes, in a bid to drive the average price per listen down to one cent). ‘The Wrote & The Writ’ is smart but not smart-arsed and contains the lovely line “don’t say in a letter what you can’t in my ear”; it sounds like a lost song from the original highpoint of folk in the sixties. ‘Tickle Me Pink’ is a bouncing hoe-down with an infectious chorus. And that's just the first three songs.

Johnny Flynn remains unknown enough that he could be playing in Nottingham (possibly headlining) today as a ‘could be-‘ . On the evidence of this, it shouldn't take too long for him to join that illustrious list of ‘actually are-’s.

Albumaday... rating:  6/10

1.       The Box – 3:36
2.       The Wrote & The Writ – 4:07
3.       Tickle Me Pink – 3:11
4.       Brown Trout Blues – 5:02
5.       Eyeless in Holloway – 4:05
6.       Shore to Shore – 4:23
7.       Cold Bread – 3:29
8.       Wayne Rooney – 4:18
9.       Leftovers – 4:16
10.   Sally – 3:35
11.   Hong Kong Cemetery – 4:51
12.   Tunnels – 3:08
13.   All the Dogs are Lying Down – 4:13
14.   Shore to Shore (Reprise) – 1:27

Listen to ‘Tickle Me Pink’: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8I2hzMCiNH4

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