The Gig: Jake Bugg supported by The Family Rain
When: 24 October 2013
Where: o2 Academy Brixton, London
In One Word: Humbling
Arriving at Brixton Academy on a cold and wet October evening isn’t the most enthralling idea of a night out, but the air outside the Academy was thick with anticipation. The doors to the Academy hadn’t even opened yet and the line for the main entrance was already stretching all the way down the back and around into another street, everyone eager to escape the abysmal weather. Tonight’s crowd were a lot more eclectic than I anticipated, generally the younger members of the crowd would outweigh the older crowd, but it was certainly the other way round tonight.
The Family Rain, a trio of brothers from Bath were first on to support. They look and sound like an early Kings of Leon with bluesy-rock riffs. Frontman William Walter howls through “Trust Me…I’m a Genius” and even though The Family Rain practically blow the roof off the Academy, it was fairly obvious that the crowd were they were for one man only; Jake Bugg. After a deafening mass sing-a-long of Oasis’ “Champagne Supernova” the man himself appeared under a spotlight and burst into new track “There’s a Beast and We All Feed It” which is followed by “Trouble Town”.
I had my doubts about whether he could hold his own in such a large venue as he was backed up by only a drummer and second guitarist, but this disappeared after the second song.
“Storm Passes Away” is a particular highlight, its a uptempo number in which Bugg laments ‘they keep telling me I’m older than I’m supposed to be’. Alongside tracks from his new album, Jake played tracks including “Two Fingers”, “Seen It All” and “Taste It” from his self-titled debut album to rapturous applause from the audience.
Although many criticise his so-called lack of showmanship, Bugg only paused a couple of times throughout the night to thank the audience for coming and to introduce a song. This, however, is without an air of arrogance that is generally perceived about him and is more humble and unassuming.
After a brief pause in the gig, Bugg comes back out for an encore, which I was surprised about seeing as he only has two albums worth of material, to play “Broken” under a white spotlight, which was preceded to a cover of Neil Young’s “Hey Hey, My My” before closing the second of three sold out nights at Brixton with first single “Lightning Bolt”.
What tonight proves is that Jake Bugg isn’t a one trick pony, and that his forthcoming album Shangri-La will become a force to be reckoned with in the Albums of 2013 polls once it is released on November 18.
© Lauren Towner, Music Vice
Photographs of Jake Bugg at Brixton Academy by Lauren Towner:
Jake Bugg played:
“There’s a Beast and We All Feed It”
“Seen It All”
“Simple As This”
“Storm Passes Away”
“Messed Up Kids”
“Ballad of Mr Jones”
“Song About Love”
“What Doesn’t Kill You”
“Hey Hey, My My” (Neil Young cover)
Share and discuss using the links below. Follow Music Vice on Twitter at @MusicVice. Long Live Indie!