Jake Bugg – Shangri La Virgin EMI

AT just 19, Nottingham-born singer songwriter is back with his second album Shangri La, which is as packed with zest and energy as you’d expect from someone of his age.

The album kicks off moderately with country-tinged There’s A Beast And We’ll Feed It but really picks up with two-minute wonders Slumville Sunrise and indie floorfiller-in-the-making What Doesn’t Kill You. The pace then slackens, but to good effect, and if Bugg’s sometimes nasal vocals grate, Me And You and A Song About Love are sweet antidotes.

Other highlights include All Your Reasons, the acoustic Pine Trees and Storm Passes Away, which is dripping in the Nashville sound.

The fact that legendary producer Rick Rubin, who produced the American Recordings by Bugg’s hero Johnny Cash, is on board goes a long way to demonstrate the faith in this promising singer, who was nominated for a Mercury Prize this year. If he keeps his standards this high, hopefully next year the Mercury Prize will all be his.