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jake bugg, king tut's, glasgow

Don't ask me to pick 18-year-old blues-rock wunderkind Jake Bugg out of a line-up.

Although he's barely old enough to play King Tut's, a major label record deal and being hailed by Billy Bragg as some sort of state school voice of a generation have generated enough buzz to pack the venerable venue to capacity long before Bugg's set begins.

Taking to the stage to a blast of Robert Johnson, the youngster's retro stylings are clear from the outset. The first part of his set takes its cues from the same rock and roll and psychedelic influences that gave birth to the best of Oasis, with pretty much every track sounding, in some indistinguishable way, as if it could be the big single.

When Bugg greets the crowd it's in the indecipherable mumble of the shy teenager, but he sings with a perfectly pitched sneer. The world-weariness of a line like "I've seen it all, nothing shocks me anymore" sits a little unconvincingly on one so young, but if you close your eyes – or, indeed, are standing behind several very tall men in haircuts straight out of 1996 – his languid vocals suit the style.

There is no denying that Bugg is a talented performer, particularly when he strips away the Britpop bombast and performs songs like Someone Told Me on acoustic guitar. Their similar lyrical themes and council estate backgrounds have drawn comparisons between Bugg and the Arctic Monkeys, but songs like Smile are more reminiscent of Alex Turner's soundtrack to Submarine.

The cheeky stomp and proper old-school rock riffs of singles Two Fingers and Taste It round the night off, inspiring grown men to put their arms round each other and dance.

HHH

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