The Jim Jones Revue + John J Presley @ O2 Academy, Birmingham – Friday 19th October 2012


Review by Cath Holland, photos by Tony Gaskin

Battling through traffic must mean a trip to the O2 Academy in Brum, and we’re all set for a night of stripped back bar room R’n’R, and main support act John J Presley, dosen’t disappoint.

The Birmingham trio of Presley on guitar/vocals, Miss Perry on keyboard and suave looking Richard Franklin on drums belt out a rip roaring set of folky, southern blues inspired rock. Presleys deep, husky voice combined with a distorted guitar tone brings to mind what might have happened if Johnny Cash had teamed up with the Black Keys. Their songs have an intensity to them that captivates the crowd and creates a real old school ambience where you really feel a part of the gig.

John J Presley is creating a stir, mainly by word of mouth and after tonight there’ll be a few more tongues wagging.




So onto the main man – Jim Jones and his Revue. This is pure unadulterated Rock ‘n’ Roll, he explodes onto stage with the energy of an early Jerry Lee Lewis and charisma of Nick Cave, regalling us with 50’s inspired blues rock that harks back to a time when the words “Rock and Roll” were dirty, only to be spoken and seen in the seediest bars and clubs, and that atmosphere is brought back to life here tonight. Jones is a passionate performer, backed by his wingman Rich Orrton on guitar. They lead the rest of the excellent band through an impressive back catalogue as well as new material from the latest album, “The Savage Heart”. Old favourites such as “Killin Spree”, “Shoot First” and “Burning Your House Down” sit nicely with new tracks “Chain Gang” and “It’s gotta be about me”. In a week that saw us celebrate what would have been the 60th birthday of one of our greatest performers, Mr Joe Strummer and the news that the Stones would be playing some live shows – if you could afford it! Then it’s refreshing to be able to see that there are bands who are continuing the great legacy that the likes of Strummer have left us at a price that the fans can afford. Two great live bands for less than £20, you can’t beat that.


For more of Tony’s photos from the gig check below