Andrew Combs mesmerises London ***** Live Review

The supremely talented Andrew Combs dropped an early contender for 2019 gig of the year at London’s Borderline club. Accompanied by guitarist Charlie Whitten, Combs featured four new songs and left his audience stunned with the sheer beauty of his performance. Whitten also acted as support with a fabulous solo set, including Marksman that he and Combs co-wrote, finishing with bringing Combs on stage to supply backing vocals for Virginia.

Whitten played the bass on Combs’ 2017 European band tour. He had longer hair then and amused the audience by telling the story about how he had cut his hair for a music video but the cut didn’t work, for the video that is.

Combs opened with Rose Colored Blues and Whitten excelled with sympathetic and skilful guitar accompaniment and harmonies. This set the tone for the evening, you knew you were in for something very special.

The Grammy nominated Rainy Day Song which Combs co-wrote with Brent Cobb followed and then All These Dreams and the hypnotic Lauralee.

The first of four new songs Like A Feather, included the lyric “may we stay like this forever” which was “written for my wife, who’s at home with our 17-month old daughter”.

Other new songs were Firestarter, Stars of Belonging and Dry Eyes. When introducing a new track Combs commented dryly “We’re working on a new record, trying out some new tunes. It doesn’t matter whether you like them or not as they’ll be on the new record.” Well Andrew, we liked them so you can put them on the record with a clear conscience.

One of his favourite songs to sing, Too Stoned To Cry, had an outing, Combs has re-cut this track from his 2012 self-funded Worried Man album and this has recently been re-released by his record label Loose Music.

Other tracks included Better Way, with a great guitar solo by Whitten, and “my favorite tree hugging hippie songDirty Rain. For an encore came the hauntingly beautiful Hazel.

The show highlighted a different dimension to Combs’ music, previously BOON has reviewed his solo and band shows. This duo hit the spot with exquisite reworkings of Comb’s studio recordings.
Andrew Combs is a very special talent.

Words by Chaz Brooks

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