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Luke Jackson Luke Jackson
Album: Tall Tales And Rumours
Label: Self Released
Tracks: 13

I'm pretty sure that you all have a favourite t-shirt kept in the top draw of wherever you keep your t-shirts, in fact you probably have a couple, a few years between them, but all slightly faded, slightly baggy, worn about the edge and in important photographs of your life. It's a t-shirt that helps define who you are, where you've come from and is vehemently protected when someone suggests it's time to throw it out. It may get worn less often for a while but it's going nowhere.

If you recognise the above, you'll also recognise that moment when you pull on a brand new t-shirt and immediately know it's going to be a new favourite t-shirt. It currently fits like a second skin, but you know it's going to grow up with you. "Tall Tales And Rumours" is my new favourite t-shirt.

Part of the reason for that is because it feels like Luke Jackson, well the Luke Jackson Trio`s new favourite t-shirt. From the accapella opening track, something which mirrors Luke`s live performances, you know that you are getting into a garment that's be labelled with love.

For a start, the tracks are so tight, these are songs that have really been explored, solo, in a group setting, maybe with a guest, Amy Wadge, appears on the album, maybe not, but with the purpose of bringing out the best of the song in a way that doesn't destroy the mystery, leaving you the chance to explore just as hard.

As you know, I`m a sucker for narrative and Luke Jackson has a way with words that I find almost incomparable and if I have to compare my instinct would be to go for poets and writers as much another lyricists and that`s before you take into account the delivery.

Jackson is possessed of a voice that is beyond his years, it gives his songs a delivery that is simply sublime. Not only that, he doesn`t restrict his songs to the one genre, rather chooses to give the song whatever it needs to bring the best out of it, be that blues, folk, jazz, country etc, but in a way that is uniquely his and which bind those songs together like family.

In Andy Sharps & Conor Downs he has two great and sympathetic musicians that are capable of helping him to pull out the best in himself. I could call out pretty much any song on the album as an example of why this is destined to become a favourite t-shirt.

"Leather And Chrome" is a song that reflects on a passed on dream and one that I feel will become a future standard as much as "Vincent Black Lightning 1952" or "Beeswing". Yes I am comparing Luke Jackson to Richard Thompson and in 40 years time new aspiring artists will be getting described as the new Luke Jackson. This is songwriting at the absolute best.

The other is "Lucy And The Camera" the first song I ever played on my radio show from "Tall Tales And Rumours" it is a song that shows just how much Luke Jackson understands people, there is such an empathy in his writing, psychology students would do well to examine songs like this in the hope they can slide so subtly under someone else`s skin.

"Tall Tales & Rumours" will be a favourite t-shirt/album for years to come.

Neil King