Maybe it's the economic crisis, but it was with a sense of resignation that I plugged in to listen to Humphrey - a 30-year-old from Stoke-on-Trent: another singer-songwriter, another piano man, more power ballads, more maudlin navel gazing... Enough already. If I want doom and gloom I'll watch the Bloomberg. It was encouraging to see that he doesn't look miserable - he's blond, he surfs - and he has one of the most relaxed vocal deliveries you'll hear. You can understand why The Sunday Times compared him to Soft Machine's Kevin Ayres, whose doped-out vocals encapsulated the laissez-faire attitudes of the Sixties.

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