REVIEW: John Fullbright & Amy Speace, Tunnels, 9/10, by Keith Clark
SINCE his debut studio album From The Ground Up was nominated for a Grammy award last year the music press on both sides of the Atlantic has been pouring praise upon John Fullbright and confidently predicting that he will be "the next big thing."
They may be right because the 25-year-old rancher's son, below, from a small town in Oklahoma can sing exceptionally well, is a very fine musician and a talented writer of strong melodies and literate thoughtful lyrics. Playing to a capacity audience he delivered a gig that was even more impressive than the one he gave us on his first visit to Bristol earlier this year.
Nashville-based Amy Speace who opened the show, was also making a return to Bristol and she too impressed with her folk-style songs. Her stunning voice was not unlike that of Joan Baez particularly on Ghost and The Killer In Me.
Hunter's Moon was especially good as was The Sea And The Shore, sung as a duet with John Fullbright.
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Playing solo and accompanying himself on guitar, piano and harmonica, John Fullbright seemed more relaxed than on his previous visit and his husky voice sounded even more powerful.
His songs were invariably melancholic, so much so that he took pains to tell us that "I'm not as sad as I seem," but there were real flashes of anger in the powerful Satan And St Paul and the remarkable Gawd Above in which he takes the voice of a scornful God.
His music was certainly varied ranging from almost old style country with I Don't Feel Like Dancing to bluesy rockers such as All The Time In The World.
Is John Fullbright a star in the making?
You'd better believe it.