Eric Church / The Cadillac Three, O2 ABC, 27/2
The Cadillac Three present the modern-hillbilly stereotype in their music, clothes, and stage banter. They start the concert with their country-rock tune “I’m Southern,” proudly proclaiming their heritage as if the audience has not noticed the ripped jeans, facial hair and farmer’s caps. The self-professed “proud men from Tennessee” play seven or eight songs which soon start sounding similar to the previous one.
While the transition is occurring between The Cadillac Three and Eric Church, a chant of “U.S.A.” surfaces near the front of the stage and its clear that even in Glasgow plenty of Americans are in attendance as the chances of any other nationality chanting “U.S.A.” are quite slim. Eric Church bounds onto the stage with a huge grin and his band, who also claim to be from Tennessee, move around the stage with comfort.
All the songs are from the first-person perspective and they easily connect with the fun-loving audience as topics include getting drunk, getting in fights, falling in love, and getting married. The song about getting married includes the chorus “She got a rock, and I got stoned” which the crowd sings with abandon. The microphone stand includes a place to hold his Jack Daniels Whisky and throughout the show Eric Church reaches for it and uses it as a prop with the audience when telling stories about drinking too much.
For all his skill as a raconteur however, he only takes two or three sips throughout the whole concert and it is 95% full at the end of it. At one point, Eric sings about boots and several audience members hold their cowboy boots in the air. Seeing this, he grabs two from near the front row and uses them as show-and-tell props through the rest of the song. As he finishes singing, he grabs a sharpie and signs each boot before throwing them back into the crowd. Eric Church entertains with his catchy songs but mostly with his charming personality and obvious energy. Even for those who aren’t country music fans, he’s worth the effort to see in concert.
[Micah Van Dyk]