Music preview: John Bramwell at Brudenell Social Club, Leeds

John Bramwell of I Am Kloot
John Bramwell of I Am Kloot
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I Am Kloot’s frontman Johnny Bramwell is back out on the road with his solo tour this month and will be calling at Leeds’s Brudenell Club on Friday evening.

Kloot’s singer and main songwriter performed at the Trades Club in Hebden Bridge to a sold-out crowd last week. In many ways, Bramwell, 49, considers smaller venues to be better than the sizeable places his band plays at.

“One of the reasons of going out is to play places like The Trades and The Brudenell because, I think if we’re all honest, it’s in venues that size that we’ve probably all been to our favourite gigs. I think that nothing can beat the atmosphere of the small club that’s run by people who are real music enthusiasts.”

This is one of the reasons why Bramwell recorded a live album at The Trades Club last year, sold exclusively at his solo gigs.

I Am Kloot has been in existence since 1999. The Mancunian trio, consisting of Bramwell, Peter Jobson and Andy Hargreaves, have released six studio albums. However, they only really started to gain serious commercial success in 2010 when their fifth album, Sky At Night, made the UK top 30. Last year, Let It All In peaked at number 10 on the UK charts to great critical acclaim.

Bramwell still sounds quite surprised when asked about how it feels to have such a successful album. “I suppose it has done well. It’s a strange old business, I enjoyed the whole thing of it getting ‘bigger’ – that’s the word everyone kept using.

“For me, I’m not sure bigger is better; I’ve been gigging for a long time and I’m lucky that I’ve always had an audience. I think we did a great job playing the bigger places, but for me the experience seemed to be a little not quite real, actually.

“In another 50 years we’ll be number one!”, he laughs.

Mainstream success might have come a little later for I Am Kloot than it does for most bands, but Bramwell says that he doesn’t see a time when they will stop.

“I think for all three of us, the biggest ambition was to say that this is what we do full time. No matter what, I’ll always play. If the audience dwindles to virtually nothing I’ll still be getting up in the pub and playing.”

February 7, Brudenell Social Club, Queens Road, Leeds, 7.30pm, £15. www.brudenellsocialclub.co.uk

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