Self confessed miserable git Jamie Clayton‘s dark-spirited voice is emotionally wringing out our innards. Despite much of his lyrics targeting around drunken regret and inebriated romance, his powerful delivery and sparse arrangement is bluntly sobering.
With a cultured strumming hand technique pulling you back and forth to his swirls of power and subtlety, Clayton spawns Springsteen heart with Rick Rubin period Johnny Cash reflection.
His repertoire has grown from the bleak discotheque of his former outfit, Dirty Soul, into a more intimate and engaging existentialism while retaining the bold choruses and neat hooks that the four piece were renowned for.
Despite the moodiness of much of the set, ‘The Architect’ closes with blue skied, if slightly battered, blind optimism: “I’ll build a bridge to the sky / Just for us / All for you,” is the lifting refrain tugging us through the drama to an altogether more hopeful outlook.