South Coast Revue: Young ‘Songwriters’ showcase at The Egremont, Worthing
Well done to The Egremont in Worthing for putting on the ‘Songwriters’ afternoon recently, after a prestigious ‘songwriting circle’ event at St Paul’s – a beautiful church in the town centre, Union Chapel-esque – on a Friday night (featuring members of Squeeze, Gomez, and The Magic Numbers).
A friend and I were chatting about how important ‘artist-focussed’ events are, and what an uphill struggle it is in a ten second attention span hyperreal culture, let alone getting the obliviously lairy chatters in the corner to can it.
I also bemoaned to the organiser the lack of complexity in young songwriters, not to mention my distaste for dropped t’s and affected defective r’s. He said ‘nothing more punk rock than that’. And he has a point.
Annie Dorrit, Charlie & The Villas and Max White that day exemplified the south coast at its most nuanced, displaying song craft of a surprising depth. Patience, grace and reflection aren’t dirty words, and the kind of focus and introspection are of the ultra-involving type displayed once by Finlay Quaye, and nowadays by LA Salami.
Emotion delivered without cliché or accidental pretension has always been key, and these three co-habiters, Beatles style, achieve that with intent. Dorrit’s Alone stands out as an eviscerating, intriguing beguiler of a song, and moments of the two young gentlemen’s sets lived right up to that.
South coast 2017: the punk is on the inside, and the January air tastes of salt, blood and wood.