TRAIN BRING THEIR WORLD TOUR TO GLASGOW'S O2 ACADEMY AS PART OF THEIR SIX-DATE UK AND IRELAND TOUR LEG.
Got to the Academy with plenty of time to catch the support act Hannah Grace, not what I expected. Although it was refreshingly different, it wasn’t the kind of thing to get the energy levels of the crowd up. Hannah and her guitarist did 5 or 6 stripped back songs, Her voice immaculate and beautiful powerful enough to have stood alone, his guitar lines a mixture of clean simplicity moving towards slightly overdriven and edgier as the songs progressed. The stand out track was an cover of the Fat Boy Slim track Praise You. No complaints about their abilities I just think they were not the right choice for that venue and crowd.
On to Train, the band came out 7 strong complete with backing vocalists, which really filled the stage given the compact nature of the support.They started with Drink Up and the sell out Glasgow crowd were already loving it. The crowd were the most eclectic mix of ages and styles I’ve seen at a gig in a long time.
Before the gig I din’t think I was too familiar with anything other than the hits but it soon became apparent that I knew more tracks than I thought. The first 6 tracks being really radio friendly sounding and those around me seemed to sing every word back to Patrick Monahan the lead singer, who had a very easy relationship with the crowd without seeming to have to work too hard. At one point in the gig he threw Train T-Shirts into the crowd and got the band to sign the one he was wearing before also sending that out to some lucky fan…..this was on top of lots of drum stick and guitar picks which made their way out to the waiting hands held aloft in expectation of a souvenir.
By the track Save Me San Francisco the crowd were lapping up what was a very professional and slick performance, very little chat between songs and the energy kept up in the room, the light show was also ideal for the venue and the setting. Monahan then paid tribute to Tom Petty and the band delivered a cover of Don’t Do Me Like That. The Track Half Moon Bay off the deluxe version of one of the bands earlier albums was followed by Monahan getting down in the pit right next to his fans to sing Bruises. He then sent the band, with the exception of the keyboard player, off the stage whilst he sang Always Midnight acapella, here I mean acapella as he didn’t use his mic, the effect was quite stunning as the earlier part of the gig had been loud and sing along, this created a very intimate moment as the crowd really hushed to hear…..well, all except the random Glasgow guy shouting ‘On yersel Patrick’ in between lyrics. Monahan never missed a beat in this emotive song but made reference to the shouts after the song and during the next track, Marry Me, where he shouted out something incoherent between lyrics, much to the delight and amusement of the crowd.
The band and Monahan then played what seemed like a medley including a snippet of Shape of You by Ed Sheeran and then finally hit the crowd with Hey Soul Sister and finished the main performance with Play That Song.
Back on for the encore which after playing We Were Made For This, saw them tackle Under Pressure by Queen which was, in my humble opinion, a great cover showing just how tight the band are. The big finale was obviously Drops Of Jupiter their biggest hit, and predictably this went down a storm.
All in all a consummately professional performance, Monahan’s vocals perfect throughout, the band tight and in control, the sound quality could be the best I’ve heard in the Academy and the light show ideal. The only thing missing for me was that feeling of uncertainty of being at a truly live performance which I’m sure the fans wouldn’t say was a down side and from the energy around me, the fans were happy. Good gig.
TRAIN'S WORLD TOUR CONTINUES:
Sat October 21st 2017 : BIRMINGHAM O2 Academy
Mon October 23rd 2017 : LONDON Eventim Apollo
Tues October 24th 2017 : DUBLIN Vicar Street
Wed October 25th 2017 : BELFAST The Waterfront
Wed March 7th 2018 : NEW ORLEANS Sail Across The Sun Cruise 2018
Thurs March 8th 2018 : NEW ORLEANS Sail Across The Sun Cruise 2018
Fri March 9th 2018 : NEW ORLEANS Sail Across The Sun Cruise 2018
Sat March 10th 2018 : NEW ORLEANS Sail Across The Sun Cruise 2018
Sun March 11th 2018 : NEW ORLEANS Sail Across The Sun Cruise 2018