Tonight`s show is performed within the wonderful Grade 1 Listed church in St Paul`s Square in Birmingham`s Jewellery Quarter, the last remaining Georgian square in our great city.
The stage, or maybe I should say alter, is atmospherically lit with numerous candles to the side near the closest of the pews, as Matthews and picks up his guitar and it`s straight into a number from his most recent release with title track “The Great Untold” The song seemingly written about the impending arrival of his forthcoming child and what the future holds with all its new hopes and fears. As the show progresses, we learn that his son has arrived and is now ten weeks old.
We get a mix of old and new tracks with the heart-breaking `Mona`, enigmatic `Sunlight`, `Song to A Wallflower` and intricate `Eyes Wider Than Before` before Scott reminisces about working with the legendary Danny Thompson former Pentangle member and go to bassist for John Martyn, Richard Thompson, Kate Bush, Tim Buckley, Nick Drake, well who hasn`t gone to him, and plays `So Long My Moonlight` a cut that Thompson weaved his magic on.
The next two songs that Matthews shares are brand new songs that are again on the new release and I felt were quite reminiscent of the late, great Jeff Buckley with `Something Real` and `As The Day Passes`. When he lets rip, his vocals soar, and the sound fills the whole space with the superb acoustics of this unique venue.
The show is closed out with the aching `City Headache`, my favourite track from the new record `Cinnamon` and the classic `Passing Stranger`
After some encouragement, the singer returns to the stage for a brief encore and is bombarded with requests as to what people want to hear. It ends up with a two-way tie between `Virginia` and `Elusive` with `Elusive` winning out. The track is shared, and this ninety-minute show is concluded, and Mr. Matthews promises to share a beer and chat with anybody who wishes as he takes his leave. This Ivor Novello Award-winning singer-songwriter was brave to shun a band scenario and lay bare his soul with just a few trusty guitars and a harmonica for company. But this last release is a stripped back affair and it was interesting to hear some other more familiar tunes played in a not all together familiar style. An interesting venue and an interesting night. One that I can say I was happy to have been part of.