Ben Watt back in Bexhill at release of his latest album

Ben Watt at the DLWP in April 2016
Ben Watt at the DLWP in April 2016

After 16 years and nine albums in Everything But The Girl, a further 10 at the helm of his electronic label Buzzin’ Fly, a DJ residency on BBC 6Music, and two prize-nominated books, Ben Watt has gone back to his roots as a solo singer and songwriter.

Now he returns to Bexhill to play an intimiate cafe-bar gig at the DLWP ahead of the launch of his new solo album Fever Dream on April 8.

Of his new songs, Watt says: ‘I got back from tour with a few notes for a new book, but life got in the way. Close friends were falling apart, my own relationships were being tested.

I found I wanted to capture smaller snapshots about how love shifts over time, what endures, how we cope. And they became songs.

Some came out darker and more troubled, others softer and more hopeful. And that then became the album structure. First half heavier, second half lighter. A sense of transformation, rather than just a collection of songs. I hadn’t done that before.”

It was in 1981 that Watt first appeared in London as a precocious nineteen year-old singer-songwriter-guitarist. His breakthrough 1982 EP Summer into Winter featured alt-folk icon Robert Wyatt and drew comparisons with Tim Buckley. His early solo work may be overshadowed by his subsequent successes with Tracey Thorn, but his 1983 debut solo album North Marine Drive reached No 1 on the UK Independent Albums Chart.

Tickets: £15- £17 on 01424 229 111 or 01424 229111.