Benjamin Clementine: At Least for Now | Album Review

Fri, Mar 27, 2015, 17:30


At Least For Now

Benjamin Clementine

Virgin EMI

Singer / Songwriter

That Benjamin Clementine has presence is clear from the outset. The London native has had an eventful life, as seen in biographical notes about homelessness and busking in Parisian Metro stations.

But when he opens his mouth and starts to sing, you’re floored by that extraordinary voice of his. It’s the kind of voice which would convince lesser talents to ham it up, but Clementine mostly resists that temptation.

Save Winston Churchill’s Boy’s melodramatic reworking of the prime minister’s famous second World War speech, much of At Least For Now comes across as nuanced and poised, especially the beautiful arch of Cornerstone.

You can hear traces of Antony Hegarty, Nina Simone and Rufus Wainwright in his vocals, while the sparse pianowork owes a tip of the hat to Yann Tiersen.

A strong, promising opening statement.