Charlie Cunningham, Lines

Singer-songwriter Charlie Cunningham released his debut album Line, this January.

By Jane Howkins.

London based singer-songwriter Charlie Cunningham released his debut album Lines a couple of months ago and we recently gained a copy, of which we were suitably impressed. It’s an introspective and intimate portrait of a man struggling to discover who he really is, all the while playing music that can only be described as beautiful.

We were caught up in Cunningham’s web by the time the first track (cleverly titled An Opening) had finished. It’s a brave opening song as it lays Cunningham’s heart right on the line, but there’s something about the combination between his mournful singing and the way his fingers seem to dance across the guitar strings that tugs at the heartstrings. Things only get better from there, with the rest of the album featuring a selection of tracks that will make you think with both your head and your heart. Most of the music featured on Lines at first sounds rather simplistic in nature, but that’s the beauty of it. Every instrument sounds needed, and this adds to the intimacy that Cunningham has cleverly created.

Singer-songwriters have gotten a lot of stick recently, in part due to the fact that there seem to be so many of them around nowadays (it’s often used as a kind of ‘catch all’ term), and also because they can tend to be a little bland. Cunningham bucks this trend, playing his folky, acoustic music in the way that the genre should be played, and it stands out. Sadly, it’s possible that this singer-songwriter won’t get the recognition he deserves, because well, that’s the way of the world, and the world likes to listen to stuff that is easy and bland, rather than that music which is exciting and soulful.

Just try listening to Lines and tell us that you don’t feel anything when the chorus to Lights On or Born kicks in – this is a majestic album, and one that deserves to be heard.