_48019749_-4@ Newcastle The Cluny, February 15 2013

Having already sold out three shows on this tour, Jim Lockey and the Solemn Sun may feel slightly disappointed by the numbers present in The Cluny on Friday night.

But they didn’t let it show as the band ploughed through a show stopping performance for the lucky few.

Over the past year the band have had a hectic schedule with the release of debut album Death, a slot at the Olympic opening ceremony as well as opening for Frank Turner on his sold out UK tour. 

But despite an exacting workload the band looked relaxed – claiming they are learning from each experience.

It’s only been a few months since JL&TSS last played in Newcastle, but what a difference that time has made in terms of stage presence and crowd interaction – with all four members appearing to grow in confidence with each performance.

With this in mind it is perhaps no surprise that the Cheltenham four pieced have been chosen to support one of the biggest acts around – The Dropkick Murphys –  on their upcoming US tour, where they will get the chance to strut their stuff at the infamous Paddy’s Day show in Boston’s House of Blues.

Following their recent exposure in Kerrang!, which the band claimed to be a dream come true having grown up religiously reading the publication, it is clear that this is an act we are going to be hearing a lot more about over the next couple of years.

This kind of exposure may be one of the reasons for Lockey’s dominant stage presence as he commanded the crowd on the night – demanding their attention as he produced a performance years beyond his age.

It was perhaps a bit of a surprise for Death’s opening track England’s Dead to come so early in the set. But it proved to be a shrewd move to draw the crowd in as the rest of the set flew by.

The night’s knockout blow came in an unexpected fashion with A Song About Death, trumping some of the faster paced songs, with its catchy chorus and blues inspired riffs.

Watch out because these boys are living the dream – and they have no plan on ending that any time soon.

Adam Keys