Album Review: Luke Jackson – Solo : Duo : Trio

Having been involved with the roots music scene in this country for a good few years now, it’s always a pleasure to receive a new recording from an artist that you have seen develop from their first shows, and the work they have done to achieve their current status.

And for Luke Jackson – hard work has certainly been the name of the game. Armed with a talent for songwriting, a strong, destinctive singing voice and a maturity on guitar that defied his years, Luke started on the open mic and acoustic showcase scene around the South and London in his early teens. It was fairly evident even at that point, that should he continue down that road he’d make people sit up and take notice.

Fast forward a decade and that’s exactly what the industry did. BBC Folk Award nominations, supports to some of the biggest names in the genre – and three very well received studio albums to date.

This new offering is however a live record – recorded to an intimate audience in his home town of Canterbury, and mixing material from all three studio albums, plus some stuff never before released. The show consisted of solo, duo and trio sets – the best of which has made this album.

Listen to one of the tracks from the album on our Mixcloud Show

It’s an excellent document of what Luke has achieved over the years and showcases an artist who has really honed his craft, especially in the live performance arena. The open track ‘Fun Of It’ is a belting bluesy number that sets the stall out perfectly – allowing Jackson’s voice to take centre stage. ‘Father’s Footsteps’, with Andy Sharps adding bass and backing vocals glides along with a head nodding percussive guitar accompaniment and ‘Aunt Sally’ adds Connor Downs on drums to really rock things up – ballsy grooves and Jackson’s bold, pulsating vocal adding to the drive.

These are just three of what is an album full of strong, well performed material, all impressively recorded. It’s not an easy job recording atmosphere – but the atmosphere in that room is certainly evident on this record.

The whole record is nicely structured and provides a decent well rounded anthology of Luke’s material to date. He’s turned in to a very impressive performer, and the accolades that are beginning to come in for him are likely to continue for many years.

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Review by Phil Daniels

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