Lee Gordon

The Waterfront, Norwich

> The Waterfront, Norwich

Having self-recorded debut album Fire in My Hands, played London's Borderline venue and won the Norwich Rock Academy competition, songwriter Lee Gordon has this year shown what can be achieved when you match talent with determination.

With last night's gig at the 700-capacity Waterfront, he served notice that 2006 may hold yet greater success in store.

The magnificence of support band Some Best Friend still ringing in the crowd's ears, Gordon walked on stage needing to produce his best. Accompanied only by percussion, his opening song brought to mind the tribal entrance of the New Zealand rugby team, and certainly demonstrated the power of the man's voice.

Like a more pop-friendly Peter Gabriel, he can extract the full measure of emotion from his lyrics, and is fortunate to have the solid yet flexible rhythm section of Darren Woolner and drummer Carl Cole by his side.

Electric numbers like the Counting Crows-influenced Blank Faces are agreeably angsty, while the acoustic material, such as Neptune Underwater, never strays far from heartfelt sincerity.

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If there is one criticism, it is that the songs are too often prone to mid-tempo anonymity.

That said, Lee Gordon is a songwriter with a bright future.