Latitude 2015

Benjamin Booker brings gritty, macabre Blues to Latitude 2015

Dodgy sound hinders Booker’s self-titled debut from reaching its full potential.

Easing Latitude in with some fairly disquieting slabs of Blues, Benjamin Booker’s second onto the Obelisk, bringing a haul of muddied, twanging grit. Often, his set is a little more gritty than intended. The sound today is a crunchy underfoot, and feedback squeaks get in the way of Booker’s gruff, feeling-saturated vocals. It’s a shame, because his raw, unmistakable voice gets absorbed a little by the messiness around it.

Benjamin Booker specialises in macabre lyrics that sound all the more chilling over his noodling riff licks and misleadingly infectious fretboard scales. It’s an odd sight indeed to see revelers sunbathing serenely in front of the stage accompanied by ‘Happy Homes’. “Then she died in a gutter, by the Hillsborough River,” he growls, with a hint of menace, “with the sun on her back, near the car that killed her.”

Then again, this is the Blues, delivered verbatim. Moving through various cuts from his self-titled debut album - ‘Spoon Out My Eyeballs’ being a particular highlight - Benjamin Booker’s Bluer than an explosion in a blueberry slushpuppy factory.

Photo: Carolina Faruolo.

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