Devon Sproule, Adrian Crowley
Ross Drummond 23/03/2007
The Luminaire is the greatest venue in London for many a reason. It has the best atmosphere, the friendliest staff, the best policies (shush, when the bands are on) the most eclectic line up from night to night, the best soundtracks between bands, a brilliant overall sound and a quality control of bands that you can't find in many other places in the UK, and definitely not in London.
With the good men from Tin Angel Records (the new Coventry label from the bar of the same name) showcasing their signing, a Miss Devon Sproule, and gaining assistance from Mr Adrian Crowley, the list of sterling music that has engulfed the room is not yet set to take a fall.
Taking to the stage with guitar in hand Adrian Crowley plays a set of songs that tell tales of distant brothers and life in Ireland, his heartfelt tales and chiming guitars fill the air with melancholy but it's a beautiful thing. Imagine if Snow Patrol gained any form of marginal talent and they would begin to sound this superb.
In between sets saw Tin Angel Records spin some of their finest ranging from Dolly Parton to The Doors with splashes of Johnny Cash and Ray Charles thrown in for good measure: it was certainly good enough to keep everyone on their toes while we were waiting for Miss Sproule to weave her magic.
Adorned in a vintage dress with pinned back hair and brandishing a Gibson that was far older than the pretty lady playing it, Devon played songs from when she was just 17 years old, “before my husband taught me how to finger-pick”, all the way up to her present day songs off the new record 'Keep Your Silver Shined'. You could close your eyes and be whisked to a time when things were simpler and the people were nicer and the hustle and bustle of London Town was a million miles away. Starting solo, her sugar sweet voice bopped along nicely to the jazzy chords and impressive picking her hands illuminated.
When she started to feel lonely on came her band for the evening consisting of drums, bass and pedal steel, which was provided by the UK legend BJ Cole. It's at this point that Miss Sproule, whose solo renditions were beautiful, goes from that, to damn near perfect. The words spring from her mouth so sincerely and cascading with Cole's swelling harmonious melodies that it doesn't get much better than this. With each song like hearing stories told from friends far gone you only wish that as you walk outside, Charlottesville, which sounds so charming in your head, was at your feet.
Come back soon Devon Sproule, life is a lot more pretty when your songs are around.