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ANDY BURROWS @ BRUDENELL SOCIAL CLUB, LEEDS 26/02/13 - REVIEW BY CALLUM BARNES

 
Its fair to say by now that Johnny Borrell must be kicking himself. When Andy Burrows made his exit from Razorlight as a fairly renowned sticksman back in 2009, Borrell must've realised that he had just lost an extremely talented songwriter (Burrows co-wrote the majority of the bands hits including 'America' and 'Before I Fall To Pieces'). If he didn't, fair to say he now does. With the release of 'Company' late last year, the sound of an artist looking for his break was put to rest. The former-sticksman has been working on his own material for a while, even as his relationship with his former bandmates started to wain, 'The Colour Of My Dreams' was released in 2008. Featuring short, maybe even poetic forms of song, Burrows played around with the topics brought upon by his childhood and explored them in what sounded like a DIY effort in his own bedroom. It was clear from this that Burrows was the most musically gifted member of the indie superstars, and therefore his leave could've been predicted once the appeal of the band became more 'selective'. Andy's next guise was the cleverly titled 'I Am Arrows'. A band made up of Burrows on lead vocals, songwriting duties and guitars, there was also a full band to fill out the rest of the sound and the album itself sounded like a much different beast from the one that had emerged just a couple of years previously. The songs were becoming more constructive, differing in rhythmic and technical style and with "Green Grass" the band earned their first wide-spread single.

Entering the well-rounded Social Club of Hyde Park (and all of Leeds for that matter), is like greeting an old friend. Next year this very establishment will be battling with the Hyde Park pub for the title of my 'local'. A warm place to rest my head after a hard grinding day at uni, fancying my chances at luck being at the bottom of the next pint of chilled ale. Nothing will ever get properly resolved in this fashion, but as humans I think its important that we have somewhere to go when the going gets tough and the tough gets going (thanks Ronan). With the Brudenell's mixture of alcoholic beverages and a extremely strong underground music culture, its the perfect place for someone who's feet are now placed firmly on the ground in song weaver Burrows.

Still drumming with bands such as We Are Scientists, its clear that this is the project that means the most to him - his solo outing. As he and his three musketeers take to the stage, the tone is set for a brooding, personal based set with the second single release from "Company", 'Because I Know That I Can'. The frontman decides not to go for the guitar on this occasion and leads the song through a keyboard format- unlike the album version. After this, our host explains how he is so happy to be in lovely Leeds, and as checking the mans Facebook page can tell you, the band may not have made it if it wasn't for the AA due to them breaking down midday on their journey! Soldiering on, opener to the solo effort 'Company' goes down a treat with the crowd, familiar territory for Burrows tours it seems.

Throughout the set, there is hints at Andy's past, however, not too many. Most material is from the album, two come from the "I Am Arrows" days, while two new songs are previewed-  one is the Crowded House cover 'Four Seasons In One Day" and "Save It For A Rainy Day". The audience know due to the Burrows journey, Razorlight songs are out of the question. This is about the current body of work and not much else, which is great, may I add. 'Another Picture Of You' keeps a strong upbeat atmosphere, which is balanced with 'Light The Night' from The Snowman and Snowdog from Christmas 2012. Indeed Andy has been busy these past six months. Closing with the couplet of  'Battle for Hearts and Minds' as a solo piece before the band joining one final time for the slick ramble of 'Keep On Moving On'. With tweets fluttering around the net about a new album already finished, there's plenty more joy where this came from. Burrows has only just started.

www.andyburrows.co.uk

Review by Callum Barnes / Photo Credit Andy Wilsher