Jessica Pratt

Jessica Pratt


For me, it is easy to remember the first time I heard Jessica Pratt’s ‘Back Baby.’ It was when I was sat on my scruffy computer chair, expecting just another normal acoustic song, when suddenly I was absolutely blown away by a song that sounded like an instant classic in every single way and reminded me of sun-blitzed afternoons stretching out in freshly cut grass. A few months later, her new album On Your Own Again was released and testament to its immense strength is that tonight she is able to play a whole set, largely comprised of songs from that album, without playing a single chord from the unforgettable ‘Back Baby.’

When Jessica Pratt’s warbling voice appears on the beautiful ‘Greysides’ tonight, it soon becomes apparent that this music is far too mesmerising for the venue, where the stage is punctured with holes and the walls draped in a salacious red. It is hard to remember that just a minute ago this place was overflowing with noise as it now stands in silence, as if Pratt and her co-guitarist are just knocking around some ideas on their own. In fact, Pratt even admits that it feels a bit like a live sound-check, as the music appears fuzzy from where she is sitting.

The arresting ‘The Game That I Play’ comes next, and it is plucked with near-on perfection by the twee Jessica Pratt, as she continues to produce a sound which makes us feel so much, yet sounds like so little. It is as if we are simply observing a rather long silence in Night and Day, with anyone who dares to speak bound to be shot daggers by someone nearby. In fact, it soon strikes me that it must be hard for Pratt to measure the reaction of her audience, for her is silence a success?

The songs tonight unfurl a space for contemplation, a space to look down and think about your rights and wrongs, a space to think about your decisions and a space to think about what you want from life. It hardly sounds like a lot of fun, but at times it is something we need to do, like when we stare out of the window for a seemingly unknown amount of a time at barely nothing. We just need to do it and Jessica Pratt provides us with a space for that, in a world where often the time stood waiting for the kettle to boil is the only moment we have truly to ourselves.

The album’s title track is the standout, it is a mere vignette but it perfectly explains the space Pratt has given to us tonight, a space truly on our own where our thoughts though dark have a shining light blazing upon them from the stage. A truly mesmerising performance.

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Paddy Kinsella

Hi all, my name is Paddy and I have a love for everything from African music to indie to house (basically anything other than heavy metal). Gigging and listening to albums are genuinely the things I most value and love doing.