Live Review – Lucy Rose & City and Colour

O2 Academy, 24/02/16

Lucy Rose opens her set by herself with an acoustic guitar, and plays a gentle ditty to warm the crowd up for a modest set of folk-pop tunes which she croons through without any ceremony.

Rose’s voice is her biggest attraction in her live show, a wonderful instrument in itself, but on this evening it seemed to lack the emotional depth achieved in her recorded work. Perhaps touring has taken its toll, but when her voice is such a crucial part of her craft, it leaves the show feeling flat when not there.

Despite disappointing vocals, the accompanying band really livens up the more energetic songs, creating a huge sound that vastly livens up the songs when compared with the recorded material. Unfortunately the set isn’t paced overly well, and as soon as some momentum is built with an energetic song the tempo backs right down with another slow number. None of the songs are particularly memorable either, so the set just has a jittery and unsteady flow.

City and Colour enter after an acapella version of Soul II Soul’s ’Back to Life’ plays for an uncomfortably long time. Dallas Green, the man behind City and Colour, stands stage right with a spotlight on him, but after a set of unimaginative songs it makes one question how much he deserves such a focus.

Much like Lucy Rose, Green’s voice is perfectly nice, but City and Colour’s songs are much more predictable than any of Rose’s numbers. Himself and his band are also very low-energy for the whole evening, and even when the audience are singing along they are visibly nonplussed. Even when the band is making a big sound, they’re all just strumming their way through simple songs. Overall it just made for an uninspiring show.

[Jimmy Donaghy]

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