Once again, The Joiners are showcasing some of the best musicians on the scene at the moment. The 200-cap venue have a good track record over the years, including the likes of Arctic Monkeys and The 1975. But last night was set aside for Sam Brookes to make his name at the infamous venue.
Last night’s show was hailed by London-based Brookes, who performed at the illustrious venue in what was to be the penultimate date of his solo tour. While he may be largely unknown to some, he’s recently been touring the UK, coming off the back of his critically acclaimed 2014 Kairos album.
I must admit – going in to this gig, I wasn’t too familiar with Sam. Critics have praised his latest album, and The Independent even tipped it for a Mercury Prize nomination. But coming out of it, whatever expectations I may have had were completely blown away!
There’s a reason why he’s referred to as one of the UK’s best-kept secrets. Think shades of James Bay but an edgy style of folk music, mixed with soaring vocals and entrancing lyrics. Sam’s set was so strong and engaging that he took us to a majestic place that we felt familiar with, allowing us to tune out and be totally enthralled by his extraordinary talent. His clever arrangement and fierce sounds made this performance all the more captivating.
The supporting artists really set the tone for the night as both had their own distinctive style. The first act, Ben Craig, had his own harmonious style on his piano and a very unique voice that truly represented him; Mike Vaughan on the other hand had an alternative style with tons of charisma and had vocals powerful enough to match.
Sam came back with a new single earlier this year, My Girl Drinks Coffee. He is currently writing and recording new material for his future album. We were fortunate enough to listen to a few of those as he entwined them in with his original music, like the finest bit of tapestry you’d ever wish to see in the flesh!
A set over an hour long made it almost impossible to pick a highlight of the night. However, his latest song Always Will is easily the most recommendable, and perhaps the most popular track to fans. A typical ballad with such heartfelt lyrics that sinks its hook right into your heart leaving a warm, fuzzy feeling inside you. It’s glorious live, and almost addictive!
This event was a thrilling ride from start to finish, and a night that catered to all its audience. With two unique and talented opening acts, the night offered some real treats that were welcomed by all, but Sam Brookes as the grand finale brought the night to a satisfying end.
His tour may be nearing an end, but Brookes will officially be supporting Newton Faulkner on his upcoming tour of the UK starting from the 14th of October. If you want to see more of him, check out the full list of tour dates.
We have high hopes for Sam Brookes – when will you be seeing him next?