Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * * *
Not since a certain young Joe Bonamassa stood on the stage for his debut performance has anything sounded this good for the very first time.
Laurence Jones is a revelation, a man who has left the murky world of desire and flown straight headlong and true into an album of incredible depth and feeling that the listener maybe forgiven for wondering at what point did they cross a boundary between fact and dreamlike narrative fiction. The lure of lute in a medieval poets hands was surely just as enticing as they made their way across the land thrilling all with stories, tales and fables, now for the 21st Century Laurence Jones entices and persuades easily as he steps out from behind the line of Blues know how and announces himself completely with the album Temptation.
The musical inducement that comes through all the songs on offer on the recording, coax and urge the listener to take it in, to wallow in the sentiment and crave more, much more. There though is where the genius behind the man comes into play, the coaxing, a crooked finger waggling suggestively whilst the neck of the guitar quivers with anticipation is enough to know that he plays for keeps. This is no brief flirtation, a one album wonder, the pull is too great, so he holds back enough to unleash the killer moment and the temptation has been taken to the limit, the music apple bitten and savoured and the listener knows they have no choice but to keep eating.
With contributions from the towering legend Walter Trout and the incredible Ainsley Lister, the energy that comes across is enough to supply the country for years. Yet all of the album is surely down to the talent of Laurence Jones and in tracks such as Tomorrow Is Another Day, the amazing Fall from the Sky and its other worldly connotations, the wonderment of My Eyes Keep Me In Trouble, Bad Bad Dream and the album’s stunning title track, Temptation, it’s no wonder the man has become so feted.
This is more than an addiction, a compulsion of Blues that is being offered by Laurence Jones, but a new way of life.
Laurence Jones can be caught live on stage in 2014 at the Robin 2 in Bilston on March 23rd, Katie Fitzgeralds in Stourbridge on April 4th and at the London 02 in Shepherds Bush supporting the great Royal Southern Brotherhood on June 25th. For full tour dates go to www.laurencejones.com.
Ian D. Hall