WORTH A LOOK?: ***
TRACKLIST: On My One; Gimme The Love; Love, Hope & Misery; The Love We’re Hoping For; Put Out The Fire; Never Wanna Dance; Bitter Salt; Ain’t No Rhyme; Livin’ Up Country; All That; Hold On You.
Releasing an album the week before Glastonbury is a trick that’s worked in recent years for Ed Sheeran and Florence and the Machine.
- Read on for details of Jake Bugg’s 2016 tour
But where Ed and Flo’s triumphant Pyramid Stage sets showcased albums which crystallised what was best about their respective sounds, Jake Bugg is heading for a Sunday night headline slot at the John Peel Stage with a third album that’s an ambitious attempt to broaden his musical palette and appeal.
We caught him in March at a tiny east London venue premiering the best of On My One and when it works, as it does on the Bohemian Rhapsody-esque Love, Hope and Misery, it’s impressive. But more often than not it’s an album that makes the listener remember best known song Lightning Bolt without actually ever providing much to rival it.
Title track and album opener On My One is a bluesy and moody step in the right direction and Gimme The Love and Bitter Salt set pulses racing but there’s one particularly ill-advised stab at rap which is a struggle.
This album has been described in some quarters as make or break for Bugg and it was certainly a long time coming but it’s a little too try-hard for us. Perhaps the next one should be knocked out much more quickly with relatively little thought in an attempt to capture the live appeal he undoubtedly has.
Bugg’s touring for the rest of the year and we’re looking forward to catching up with him at the 02 Brixton Academy in November.
- Picture via Facebook courtesy Jake Bugg. Tickets for Jake’s tour here.
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