Leicester Physio & Firkin

A cult waiting to happen? Maybe. A bit of a genius? Definitely.

Parker Paul may have tinkled ivories on tour with Royal Trux, but this 'large Midwestern fellow' in orange T-shirt and dungarees, looks far more kids' TV presenter than strung-out sleaze rocker. But, then, this piano-based troubadour's very individual sense of style was what made last year's debut album, 'Lemon-Lime Room', such a find for the, literally, tens of people scattered around this Leicester pub.

His songs - Pavement, Victoria Wood, Ben Folds Five and Jonathan Richman folded together - are full of keenly observed detail. Pithy, absurd and poignant, they swing in from the leftfield. "The evening news is less honest than porn", Parker ruminates in 'Sin, Sin', "Satan rarely wears horns".

Off-kilter by design, his rich, melodic voice frequently morphing into a wayward holler, Parker roves between bold, skewed, jazzy tunes and sunny LA pop, proving himself a master of simplicity, and of the cleverest of conceits. 'We Miss Our Lady' is bitter and confused, a brief, intense sketch of a bereaved father and son. But, if you want an outsider anthem, seen through the prism of unpopular herbs, he's got 'Lemongrass' too. Sort of 'Sit Down', but a lot funnier.

A cult waiting to happen? Maybe. A bit of a genius? Definitely.

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