Sam Fender // The Bodega // 24.02.18

Sam Fender is probably the act that I’ve been most excited about emerging this year and seeing him live was as great as expected. I first heard of Sam and his music when he was an act at last year’s Barn on The Farm Festival, and it’s been a pretty speedy rise for Mr Fender since then.28504888_369309933538264_2048613131_o

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Support for the night came from Brooke Bentham, who was so cool it actually hurt me a bit. Wearing a pair of red platform shoes that had my jaw on the floor with envy and possibly the coolest trousers I’ve ever seen, she took to the stage with just her guitar to give a truly lovely performance. She had a kind of hypnotic voice, and I thought that her sound, in general, was just beyond cool (and I can confirm this after listening to her all morning).

28460387_369310003538257_508502807_oBloody Hell Sam fender is attractive, the boy’s face has more structure to it than anything in my life could ever hope to. It feels like there’s no way there could be any truth in him joking that he has “a punchable face” before starting to play ‘Friday Fighting’. Anyway, aesthetics aside it’s hard to believe that these songs are only 9 months in the making. Playing a mix of released and new material gave a taste of what he has to bring to the table.

The way he writes is what really makes him stand out to me. It’s how politically charged, and tongue in cheek some of his songs are that sets him apart from a lot of music at the moment. He isn’t just writing about love, (in fact, he’s yet to release a straight-up love song) he writes about experiences. I’ve gotta say that ‘Play God’ is completely haunting as a concept and the combination of slightly unsettlingly real lyrics and his deep, soulful voice serves to make him someone that isn’t easily ignored.

28503827_369309946871596_1440068709_oProbably my favourite song he’s released so far has been ‘Greasy Spoon’ because it’s so unusual to hear a young guy discuss (I am not sure that discuss is the right word here, but it’s the one I’m going with) the issue of what it’s like to be a woman in a society dominated by men. Rather than feeling the need to patronise and explain our feelings to us, Fender uses more of a third person narrative to tell a story.

His vocals are beyond what you’d expect live, and I think that it’s safe to say that he’s about to have a phenomenal year here, and I hope he comes back to Nottingham sooner rather than later.

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