Live Review: LANY, John Newman & Ellie Goulding

SSE Hydro, 18/03

From the get-go LANY greeted the audience of the gigantic SSE Hydro with the same warmth you’d expect of a much smaller and more intimate venue. Lead vocalist Paul Klein somewhat humbly told the audience that they’re a very small band who in no way deserve to perform in such a gigantic venue only a year into their career – however, I definitely disagree. Their friendliness and dedication struck me as they then went on to recognise fans who’d been around “since the start”.

The band, who self-describe themselves as “dream-pop meets R&B”, are an alt-pop electronic band from Nashville, TN that consists of three members: the previously mentioned Paul Klein, lead vocalist; the drummer, Jake Goss; and Les Priest, who Klein described as playing “everything else”. They appeared to be immensely excited by this new opportunity, almost as excited as they were by the bottle of Buckfast given to them in an interview earlier in the day.

Each song in their set had a different appeal, with some sending Klien bounding around the stage in time with the beat – at one point balancing on Goss’ bass drum – whilst others were a little more intimate. I really enjoyed the rich bass of their sound and would’ve loved to see them perform in a smaller or more tightly packed venue like Stereo or Nice n Sleazy’s. Too many people did the typical concert thing and waited outside until the bigger support act – John Newman – came onstage.

The lads finished their set by letting the crowd know they’ll be returning in August for another – much smaller – tour, and to be honest I’d love to go along. I feel like these guys are on their way to big things and I’m really glad I had the opportunity to see them live.

Finally, I have to make mention of the other support, John Newman, and of course the headline, Ellie Goulding herself. Newman, whilst vocally talented, has an uncomfortable arrogance in his stage presence and I found myself counting down until he was finished. He played all the typical ‘Thursday-night-at-Hive’ bangers and everyone had a great time, but I was left feeling somewhat awkward when he writhed about the stage trying to force unwilling audience members into believing he was the headline. According to my plus one, this was the same when he supported Taylor Swift in London, too.

All awkwardness from the John Newman set was quickly overshadowed, however, when Ellie Goulding took to the stage. Two days on and I’m still struggling to put words to the electricity and yet also intimacy she managed to bring to the stage. This is the second time I have seen her live – the first being T in the Park 2014 – and she did not disappoint. Altogether a fantastic show.

[Chloë Tobin-Kemmer]


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