Kien Lim is an Independent Folk Rock Pop troubadour who is currently based in London. His haunting melodies, not so innocent lyrics, and powerful, dreamy vocals, take one on a mesmerizing trip to unexpected places. Although born in Brighton, England, Kien was raised in Malaysia, and started his musical journey as an electric guitarist playing diverse musical styles from Jazz, Funk and local Malay songs to heavy rock. At age 21, he relocated to London, continuing to play in bands, broadening his musical vocabulary. One night, while watching a BBC documentary on Country Music, he heard Gillian Welch. Her simple and beautiful music inspired and turned him on to the acoustic guitar. Also around this time, a friend invited him to perform at the next year's Rogue Performance Festival 2004 in Fresno, California. He decided to write songs for it and decided to start singing. His debut performance at the Rogue Festival was very well received and set him on his new musical path. On returning to London, he started busking his songs in the underground stations, to test and hone his music, to make a living from it. He returned the next year to play the same festival and was voted by the local press, The Fresno Bee, as one of the 'Top 5 Rogue Acts 2005'. Since then, Kien has played Festivals in Manchester and London, and continues to steadily win audiences with his unique brand of genre blending music wherever he plays. _________________________________________________________ KIEN LIM AT 'BULLET', LONDON, ENGLAND. We hurried, the Professor and I, at the last minute as always, to the bar where Kien Lim was booked as the main attraction. What was he like? Well, imagine Don Williams, Doc Watson and Gillian Welch melded together by eldritch energies, their very protoplasm being drawn out and intermingled to become one person who then loses some weight and becomes a wiry Malaysian. Pretty gross, huh? Also probably not very helpful. Let me explain. Kien was very obviously wrestling with nerves when we got there, walking here and there in the bar while Prof and I listened to the acts on before him. The gig was running late, the usual technical problems. We sat there, enjoying the other performers, while Kien's posture slowly became more and more foetal. Finally, it was time for our boy to take the stage. After a bit of fiddling and quiet tuning, Kien ambled unassumingly to the microphone with his D-28 slung oddly low, and then, well, took over. The first song started quietly, Kien barely tickling the strings, then swelled and receded like the tide coming in, a lonely song about chemicals. No-one else made a sound until he finished. Then we clapped. He carried on with a series of simple sounding, but craftily constructed tunes. No swagger, no fuss, the boy just stood there, picked his guitar and sang with a mellow low voice, songs about loneliness, songs about women, though no songs about lonely women that I could detect. He played, and after a while it seemed as if we had always been there, like living in a neighbourhood where you wave at every shopkeeper. Suddenly, it ended. We came back to ourselves, and life carried on. Review by Vertebrate/Xmarimba.