Live Review: Kevin Pearce @ The Bicycle Shop

With a new single on the way – ‘Jump’ on 21st October – and an album set for release early next year, Essex folk musician Kevin Pearce has already established an active and loyal fan-base. ‘Jump’ will be the start of a developed, more textured an electronic sound from Pearce, a swerve from the traditional folk-style he became known for with 2014 LP, Dynamite. With influences from The Beatles to Bob Dylan, Chris Grosset headed down to soak up Pearce’s mellow vibe at Norwich’s quaint Bicycle Shop venue.

Kevin Pearce’s set is one that can only be described as beautifully textured. Gracing the underground stage of the Bicycle Shop in Norwich, the folk singer sat on a small platform with just his guitar; a minimal assortment of equipment and effects at his disposal.

He looked comfortable in his environment, surrounded by the soft glow of lit candles and overshadowed by a tower of board games and clutter. As he began his performance, the sound of the guitar was projected surprisingly resonantly over the laid-back audience, soaking the small space in thoughtful reverberation.

His voice seemed perfectly suited to the venue as it cut through his polished acoustic playing to create a mesmerising atmosphere with tracks such as ‘Older Times’, providing slightly more of an intricate bite to his set with excellent range and tone to complement his voice.

One highlight came later on in the form of ‘Lucifer the Landlord’, which heralded off the back of a great build up and small bit of chatter in which the Essex-based singer showed off his charming character to the crowd, very much suiting the genre and nature of his material.

Pearce’s set was a short one of around 10 songs, and ended with his latest single ‘Jump’. This finished the performance on a slightly different, more rhythmical tone, marking where his next musical adventure was to go to next. 

If there was one criticism of the night it was that at times the set felt almost incomplete. Perhaps it could have done with a little more progression in the way of instrumental variety, but this could also simply be a natural development to wait for with the next album.

Overall this is only a minor criticism as Pearce created a beautiful set that was fantastically rich in texture and sentiment, still built up layer-upon-layer. If only it could have gone on for longer.


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