Jake Bugg: Jake Bugg – review

(Mercury)

Jake Bugg sounds like he could be a box-ticking exercise for a cynical major label: Hey! We need us one of those acoustic types that are doing so well – but let's get one who'll appeal to the kids who like the View more than Ed Sheeran! So here's a young man singing about necking pills in car parks and stabbings at parties to a backing that alternates between beaty pop reminiscent of the La's and acoustic fingerpicking, the link being his nasal voice, uncannily reminiscent of La's leader Lee Mavers. He's not quite there yet – his slice-of-life lyrics tend to the over-literal, and once he's hit on a stirring riff, as on the single, Lightning Bolt, he seems to feel the job is done. But there's an attractive openness to the album, with no sense of contrivance: he's singing about what he knows. Once he knows a little more, you get the sense he might manage something truly memorable.

Contributor

Michael Hann

The GuardianTramp

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