Americana music has always appealed to me.
I think it’s the spirit of travel and escapism it evokes and the heady blend of country, folk, R&B and blues amongst others. Discovering artists that brilliantly represent this genre of music always makes me feel gratified and William Poyer is no exception. Thanks to Brixton-based independent label Laid Bare Records, it’s possible to be transported to his evocative world without even leaving the house.
Famous for the Laid Bare Live acoustic gigs, which have attracted a cult following on the London music scene, Laid Bare Records is fast becoming a recognised staple for launching up-and-coming talent and is proud to support quality independent artists - which can only be a good thing.
William is a Welsh-born singer/storywriter who has just returned from a three-year stint in Mexico, departing on a journey of discovery and with the intention of honing a sound unique to him. It's safe to say his mission has been accomplished with the launch of his stunning first single, Fell The Truth at the end of April from the debut album Born Lucky.
Written during his time in Mexico, Born Lucky is an impressive, seven-track collection of acoustic music that demonstrates a genuine attention to his craft. I love the backstory to the inaugural single Fell The Truth as well as the track itself. A chance read by William about a case involving a criminal found guilty of murder who was acquitted on appeal years later, only to finally admit to the murder on his deathbed, inspired him to write the single.
The track explores the psyche of the man involved and is told from the first-person perspective, and although the case was UK-based, it is deeply inspired by Poyer’s time in North America lending itself well to the Americana theme. Has a whiff of Making a Murderer about it, don’t you think? The accompanying video is directed by Carlos A. Corona San Pedro.
I listened to Born Lucky on repeat at least three times over, the sounds and images of driving, melodic Americana running in my head as I wrote this post from the comfort of my house in London, E17 and pretended it was me in that cracking outfit that Paulina Barcelo wears in the video to Two Days Later.
The album makes for a compelling acoustic collection and also demonstrates William's talent for songwriting. Stand out tracks for me include Makings of a Man with a catchy hook that inhabits your mind cheerfully after just one listen (I can cheat, I can steal, I’ve got the Makings of a Man in me) and the brilliantly titled The Liars, The Bitches, The Crooks and The Thieves.
After a successful Album Launch Party and Laid Bare Showcase at Brixton East on 28 April, which sadly I had to miss, I’m hoping to catch William at one of his upcoming shows:
The Pack & Carriage, Mornington Crescent – 7 May 2016
Century Club, Soho – 12 May 2016
The Sunday Social at Old Queens Head, Angel – 15 May 2016
Nozstock Festival, Herefordshire – 22, 23, 24 July 2016
Born lucky? Born talented.
Conveying great emotion through its storytelling, the guitar chords transported us to Poyer's world. So much so, the audience wouldn't allow him to say goodbye without asking for one last piece."
Sofar Sounds, Mexico