Johnny Flynn – Been Listening [album]
Happy days waking to the Exeter Phoenix to see Johnny Flynn close his UK tour. Ran into a girl I have always fancied a little bit and sorted her out with a guest list spot with a super suave phone call and nod. boom. Upon getting into the Phoenix we notice Mr. Flynn himself having a very amicable chat with the large majority of my university lecturers. Bottle of beer later and we are in.
In support were the extraordinary Melodica, Melody and Me and Basia Bulat, anyone who reads this blog a bit will know I’m a sucker for M,M+M. However Basia Bulat was a name I had only read before on the same bill as a Slow Club show so expectations were high. Both were good enough to steal any show.
When it was the time for Johnny to get to the stage the place started to pack out and it became more and more apparent that I was both older and more male than a huge majority of the audience (with the exception of the massive man who swayed about in front of my face). In fact the audience seemed hell bent on stealing the limelight from The Sussex Wit. One crazed lady attempted a dialogue about whether Johnny would like a cup of tea, another voice broke a near perfect silence in Been Listening to tell the poor guy that his phone had gone off. The reaction to the mention of The X Factor was extarordinary.
But Johnny Flynn and The Sussex Wit have been working too hard on this tour to give the yelling crowd too much of a platform. They were too busy playing a tight set filled with the kind of musical quirks and wonderful energy that make live shows such a treat. There is an indisputable mood and tone to many of Johnny Flynn’s songs, a mood of boys and their fiddles, lonely radios and travelling souls who are wasting away. All of which come to life and take on new energy on the stage. I love artists like Laura Marlin, Mumford etc. who have a great knack of taking emotions and feelings which a contemporary audience can identify with and then putting them through the slant of a world devoid of the contemporary angle. It works so well, or at least it would if the 13 year girl standing next to me wasn’t uploading photos to facebook at the same time.
But this is maybe a cynical and pretentious point, the fact is I had a great night and when the encore came in the form of The Box there could be no denying that everyone was having a great night.
Johnny Flynn – The Box