Returning to the UK, City And Colour (Dallas Green) find themselves on a string of 6 dates including two consecutive shows at Troxy in London. We were lucky enough to catch them at Cardiff Great Hall where we also got to see the wonderful Lucy Rose who we caught up with in Exeter last November.
With light conversation building in the Great Hall, Lucy Rose took to the stage, once again bringing her trademark fringe and white trainers to the show. As silence fell, Lucy set about creating a vast soundscape that haunted the high ceilings of the Great Hall. Her delicate guitar playing amongst the atmospheric accompaniment is something from another world, sending you to an entirely different place. You can't help but feel at ease and touched by the pure beauty of what she can create.
In contrast to City And Colour, she has very similar aspects whilst touching on some very important elements. Her ability to create a soundscape, like City And Colour, is something that embraces her listeners and engulfs them in a breeze of sound. With a variety of fans that City And Colour reach, it was hard to tell what the reaction would be for the singer songwriter. All I can say is that she was welcomed with open arms. Playing for around 40 minutes, Lucy performed some of her most respected tracks including Middle Of The Bed, Gamble and Shiver. All of which went down with the respect of the audience and the hum of lyrics from her local fans. Inspiring stuff to say the least.
Following was an act that I have waited years to see, Dallas Green, recording under the name City And Colour is a Canadian born singer songwriter. Hailing from St Catharines, City And Colour have become world renowned for their trademark style of acoustic folk. Green’s previous ventures with Alexisonfire has seen his solo endeavour, gain a vast variety of fans from different genre based backgrounds. Playing for an impressive 2 hours, I was more than excited for my first taste of the soundscapes that I had been wrapped up in since their humble beginnings.
As I re entered the venue, I saw the vast range of fans that City And Colour has accumulated, from metal heads, to fan girls. There is no style that Green has not touched with his music.
As the crowd cheered, they took to the stage. With a beer and whiskey on one coffee table, everyone knew where to feast their eyes. As Green took his place, the crowd steadied and hushed with anticipation. Every moment savoured and photographic memory captured a moment in time that they would not want to forget.
City And Colour played an impressive 17 song set, for most bands, that would be classed as a decent set, take into account that City And Colour play songs that are sometimes 9 minutes long and you'll soon see that this takes things to another level altogether.
Settling into what was going to be an inspiring evening was a breeze. Opening with ‘Woman’ with that haunting electric guitar echoing around the Great Hall to ghostly levels. As soon as his vocal cords reverberated, hearts melted. The softest of voices that has no range restraints, I witnessed 9 minutes of silence from the crowd where they ate up 9 minutes of some of the best musicianship that I have ever witnessed. A true masterpiece and one that set the scene for the remainder of the set.
Easing through 13 tracks, the majority of which from their latest release ‘If I should Go Before You’, playing tracks such as ‘Mizzy C’, ‘Hello’, ‘I’m Delaware’ and ‘Wasted Love’, the crowd eased through a routine of complete silence and awe inspired applause. As he left the stage, there was no chanting, no shouting, just respect and patience as they awaited his return to play out the last four tracks of the set, with one in particular on everyone’s minds....
The last four tracks were ‘Day Old Hate’, ‘Northern Wind’, ‘The Girl’ and ‘Hope For Now’, to the shock of the audience, they left the stage without playing ‘Coming Home’, possibly the track that they are most famous for and one that was left out from the setlist. From what was an inspirational performance came a short-lived dampener.
What still rang around the room however, was the everlasting soundscape that will stick in the audience’s ears for days. It is an unforgettable experience and one that immerses you in the deepest of thought. Fans do not sing along to City And Colour, they are City And Colour. Green's presence on stage makes you feel a part of his song writing and his performance brings you the emotion behind each track. Inspired? I couldn’t stop humming for the next two days!
As I left the venue, I felt inspired and excited by what life held. That is the kind of emotion that City And Colour leave you contemplating and one that will see them continue on their ever growing path of inspiration.
Words and Pictures Sion Roe
For more photos from this gig, please click HERE