London Camden Underworld

Sometimes, you have to believe in legends..

Sometimes, you have to believe in legends. If you find it hard to resist those old songs when they quietly insist that each evening at sundown in Nashville, they sweep broken hearts off the floor, then you’ll have a friend in [a]Chris Mills[/a].

The cardigan-wearing wing of the ever-blossoming alt-country cadre, he might live in Chicago but happily understands that home towns have no bearing on heartbreak.

Just a guitar, his glasses and a gentle humour – he asks us to buy the records laid out like homemade jam at the back of the venue because, “I have a team of stylists I need to pay” – the only spin on him comes from his woollen stagewear. He’s not down with the on-line present, could scarcely stake out the future, yet keeps a careful scrapbook of all those messy yesterdays.

His hidden elegance lies in the twist of lovesick metaphor, the wistful chord, the revisionist take on the slamming door and bottom-of-a-bottle gloom. He sings about changing the locks on his heart and finding he can’t get back in, of [I]”dreaming for days about my hands round your waist”[/I], of love not so much lost as thrown away. All with a half-smile and, somehow, against all the odds, a full heart.

Outside, though, London’s street-sweepers are looking at the ground, amazed.

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