ROGER TARRY LAST TIME I WAS THERE (Billydog/Pink Hedgehog) YOU will routinely hear acoustic guitar-toting singer-songwriters referred to as following in the footsteps of Nick Drake or Elliott Smith, but this is usually lazy journalese - a convenient shorthand for hacks who need an easy pigeonhole.

Thing is, Roger Tarry really does fit this particular bill. Not in stylistic terms, necessarily - although Weight does boast a dexterous fingerpicking pattern worthy of Drake at his furthest stretch - but more in terms of the unchecked emotion which drives his music.

This doesn't involve hair-tearing, hand-wringing histrionics, but instead is subtly sown throughout his compositions, which on the evidence of debut album Last Time I Was There are all quiet but forthright little masterpieces, etched with painstaking precision.

You know you're getting the real deal, basically - an outpouring of genuine feeling which nevertheless exhibits a painterly attention to detail, from the brushed drums of Driving Song to the sympathetic cello of Walk With Me (which some of you may recognise from the Dawson's Creek soundtrack).

The album is a strikingly mature piece of work, the sort of thing that you'd expect from an artist around the time of his fourth or fifth release, not someone springing more or less straight from the traps. Fans of the aforementioned Nick Drake and Elliott Smith, not to mention Sparklehorse and Low, can invest in a copy of Last Time I Was There with full confidence - it really is that good - and interested parties should be forming an orderly queue at or as we speak.