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Live Review: Patrick James

8 July 2013 | 12:49 pm | Sam Murphy

For only one EP, he easily entertained the small crowd for a little over an hour. It was a polite yet poignant performance for a man who’s certainly got more in the tank.

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“Hi, I'm Patrick James and this is my best mate, Scotty” announced the Sydney folk kid casually as he took to the stage with his banjo-slung partner. Clearly undaunted by the small, intimate crowd and the grandeur of the venue, the two of them painted a pretty cool picture backed by the red hue of the church lights. Fresh off the back of a tour with folk darling Emma Louise, there was a real 'next big thing' aura surrounding the performance, though he seemed unfazed by the hype.

The banter between he and Scotty kept proceedings lighthearted within a set of pretty heavy tracks. On EP closer, Stay, his worthy side-kick pulled out a toy xylophone, before asking a crowd member to act as the stand. James then manoeuvered into a brief cover of Bon Iver's For Emma, dedicating it to human stand 'Huey'.

His slightly hunched-over stance, with guitar slung high, alluded to images of a premature Neil Young or even Johnny Cash. He later affirmed this inspiration with a cover of Paul Simon's Blues Run The Game. It was one in a few covers drawn to beef out a solo set that included a rendition of Ball Park Music's It's Nice To Be Alive. Crowd pleasers no doubt, yet it was his own songs that captured his greatest potential. His turn at the piano on a new song, Kings & Queens, showcased the power of his tone. Coupled with his shadow stretching the heights of the church walls, it was the night's defining moment. The crescendoing harmonies between James and Scotty also made for some rousing choruses, particularly on crowd favourite, All About To Change.

For only one EP, he easily entertained the small crowd for a little over an hour. It was a polite yet poignant performance for a man who's certainly got more in the tank.

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