JAKE BUGG brought his solo acoustic tour to Southampton days after headlining The London Palladium and a huge homecoming show in Nottingham.

And as they say in the East Midlands, this time the 24 year-old was truly “on his one”, alone on the giant Guildhall stage, just one singer and his guitars.

No band, backing vocals or light show, but with 21 songs from four top 10 albums, including latest compilation Hearts That Strain, nothing else was needed.

While the kingpin of indie and country rock music was in front of nearly 2,000 people, this raw and honest performance, which began with new song How Soon The Dawn and old favourite Saffron, felt like one at a much more intimate venue.

Here was the singer at his most engaging, talking with the crowd and seemingly changing his set list to meet audience requests. Tonight was half a world away from his first time here five years ago. “I’m enjoying myself” he announced half way through the set.

A cover of Johnny Cash’s Folsom Prison Blues thrilled the crowd while single Two Fingers brought some of the biggest cheers.

Frantic numbers like Seen It All and Slumville Sunrise couldn’t be more different to the beautifully haunting tunes Broken and Slide, yet with Jake’s intricate guitar work they all worked.

Few of his contemporaries do shows like this, even fewer have worked with Grammy award winning producers and session musicians in Nashville. His latest album, featuring songs Bigger Lover and In The Event of My Demise, is his best work so far.

“Thanks for coming tonight. It’s Sunday night so I know there’ll be a lot of hangovers out there” the singer joked before promising to return next time with a full band and finishing with breakthrough hit Lightning Bolt.

Meanwhile, it was a special night for local Portchester youngster Harry-Mason Smith, who Jake brought onto the stage to sign his copy of the evening’s set list.

Earlier, Mansfield singer Georgie drew a big crowd to hear numbers like Beer Money, This Ain’t Heaven and her latest single Too Much TV. A cover of The Ronettes’ Be My Baby was enthralling even without Phil Spector’s wall of sound accompaniment. Afterwards Georgie told The Echo this date had been one of the best on the tour.

Hearts That Strain by Jake Bugg is out now. He headlines Larmer Tree Festival, Wiltshire July 20 and appears at Truck Festival, Oxfordshire July 21.

Richard Derbyshire