Jess Klein and Chris Knight

2007-01-25

This was the first time I have been to the Cluny. It’s a good venue, being a converted warehouse. The main pub section is open, but warm in feel, although having so much brick around is a bit noisy. The food was good, although as I’d already eaten well at lunch it was overly large.

As I’ve said previously, I first heard of Jess Klein on pandora, and was lucky enough to see her tonight just a few weeks later. Dressed in black, set against the light, she seems small and vulnerable on stage; the effect accenutated by her guitar, a Gibson J200 I think, which is huge; the soundbox dwarfing it’s owner. Her music, however, belies this image. Although, some of her songs are quiet and gentle, quite a most of them are belted out, her vocals strong and clear, the guitar strummed with fervour of a busker. Put on top of some melodic, and well-paced songs, it makes for a compelling performance. She’s not the best lyricist in the world and, perhaps, overuses the power of her voice but, in general, she’s well worth seeing.

Chris Knight, I have never heard of before. The introduction told us that he was from Slaughter, Kentucky. He gobsmacking accent confirmed this — I have a bizarre image of him swapping stories with a bunch of geordies afterward. Chris likes to sing about bad things. He got married at 16, and 18 and 21, his various wives gave birth in many bad situations, and he’s killed a lot of men. Still, you could feel the anticipation in the audience; we waited patiently all night for it and eventually, we heard what we had all been waiting for and Chris called the audience "y’all".

Well, this might all come across a bit negative, but I enjoyed a lot of his performance, it just went on a bit longer and got a bit familiar.

Originally published on my old blog site.