Saturday, November 23, 2013

Jake Bugg, Shangri La...

by Garrett D. Kennedy (

Last night I had listened to most of Jake Bugg’s second album Shangri La.  More than pleased with what I heard, I went from one song to the next without much pause, except for a glass of water and a couple stretches.  But then, I got caught in the moment of track ten, Pine Trees.  Up to this point, Bugg presented similarities to his self-titled first album, and, in a good way, this song wasn’t much different (more on this song later).  I began to think, “What can’t this nineteen year-old do?”

There’s element of folk, rocknroll, country, and punk.  All the songs included his creative lyrical phrasing, with a little more confidence, or maybe cockiness – a troubadour who knows what he wants out of his music.  When hearing Bugg interviewed, there’s a maturity there, too – a nineteen year-old who knows what he wants out of life.  There was an addition of Bugg giving us a taste of his electric guitar ability (Slumville Sunrise, What Doesn’t Kill You, Kingpin), which I was lucky to see live earlier this year at The Iridium in New York City (thanks to  As I sensed then, and continued to after having listened to most of Bugg’s second album, there is more to be seen – his talent very evident, yet still revealing itself.  Up to this point, there was no question Bugg had already shattered any doubt of the second album flop and the idea that he was posturing as a wanna-be Dylan.  (read more)

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