Tom Clements @ Chaplins 27 MarchAfter a bit of a runaround, I alight at Chaplins where Del Bishop has just finished, and Tom Clements is entertaining the sub-capacity crowd. Not seeing him in a competitive environment is a bonus, the other two times I’ve heard him play was at the 2012 Dorset Music Awards. Tom’s taking retuning time to tell little stories and anecdotes between the songs, which is refreshing. Some songs are sinister, some are jolly, all have decent clever finger work, and with his sparing use of the loop and effects pedals Tom pulls off a good show. I’m with a good friend, and we’re comparing guitars – both of us being uncertain about the brightness of Tom’s Martin guitar, wondering if this seems to be a trait of Martins in general.

Tom plays Seven Years, which he’s played both other times I’ve heard him, and is the sample track he kindly sent to me to include in the station promos. As such its become a favourite of mine already, its simple via the loop pedal, rather than him entering 3 or 4 loops before the song really gets going, phrases are played it feels as a natural part of the song, then overlaid . The whole set is all going so well, then Tom slips in a cover of Sultans Of Swing, yet he plays it with such panache, and the change of guitar to a lighter less rich tone works really well.