Friday, 19 July 2013

Single Review: Jay Brown - Keep Talking

If Northampton-born Jay Brown was expanding any quicker we'd need an airfield just to contain her pinky toe. Having spent the latter part of 2012 supporting little known indie band Bastille, Jay was selected for her contemporary blend of urban beats and rockin' riff work to perform on the BBC Introducing stage at this year's Glastonbury. And boy, did she blow their socks off!

Only it doesn't stop there. In anticipation her latest single 'Keep Talking' was given pride of place in the Radio 1 playlist, and Jay's instantly memorable melodies broadcast to the millions. Avoiding all the pitfalls of overproduction, I think the song's overall charm lies with its simplicity. Jay sings huskily over a backdrop of crisp, juddering guitar riffs until sparkling keys, bass and drums burst in and the track erupts into a two-and-a-half-minute summer spectacular.

Real instruments - that's something most daytime Radio 1 listeners won't be familiar with; and yet 'Keep Talking' is by no means Jay's first to be playlisted. Feistily delivered and with an exceptional breakdown, last October 'Video' was added due to its unique fusion of grunge, electronica and reggae (and the fact it rhymes "frustration" with "constipation").

The third and final track on the too-short-to-be-an-EP, 'Sun Comes Up', reveals a much mellower side to this whirlwind of talent. With nothing but an acoustic guitar Jay honestly and pensively narrates the story of a heartbroken young American yearning for her ex-lover under the bright lights of New York City. Absolutely gorgeous.

And although Jay herself has Dick Whittingtoned off to the gold-paved streets of London, that's not to say she's forgotten her hometown altogether. As well as being an out and proud Northampton gal, the whole band (cellist, upright drummer, the full shebang!) are performing on the Main Stage of Northampton Music Festival on Sunday 28th July in the Market Square. And you certainly don't want to miss out.

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