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Live Review: City And Colour & Bess Atwell | London Palladium | 28/02/20

March 11, 2020

Photo: Dean Harries 

 

With a venue as beautifully prestigious as the London Palladium, it seemed only fitting to showcase such an array of heavenly talent. Dalas Green of Alexisonfire fame takes the headline slot in the form of his vunerable folk inspired solo project City and Colour (10) accompanied by the stunningly talented Bess Atwell (8).

 

Offering a gentle lull of country-tinged acoustics, Atwell’s presence is almost ghostly; so gentle and fragile, whilst boasting an impressive vocal range in the process. The Brighton-based songwriter offers simplistically beautiful melodies with an underlying melancholic tone, and when accompanied by touring guitarist Christopher Matthewson, the pair effortlessly perfect their set. 

Atwell is undeniably humbled as she talks through her time on tour with Dallas, as well as the back stories behind each single. Closing single ‘Harvested’ leaves those in attendance in awe; seamlessly intertwining soothing tones with sorrowful lyrics, her performance is truly captivating.

 

 Photo: Dean Harries

 

As Dalas Green takes to the stage, calls of admiration spout from the audience in the form of cheers and unapologetically authentic compliments. Green, obviously humbled, sports his iconic fedora as he introduces himself. Opener, and recent single ‘Living In Lightning’ sounds pure; it’s almost unbelievable that a vocal range can carry such overwhelming sense of emotion, but Green quite literally gushes passion from the off.

 

Related - Photo Gallery: City And Colour & Bess Atwell | London Palladium | 28/02/20

 

As we proceed, the set offers a career-spanning chunk of material, with singles such as Little Hell’s ‘Northern Wind’ and ‘The Grand Optimist’ bringing back seemingly painful memories. Green stays composed throughout, despite the emotional weight that these singles quite clearly hold. Despite the strong backlog of old releases, new material sounds just as passionate as ever. ‘Young Lovers’ holds an overwhelming sense of fragility that Green portrays with such ease; it’s amazing to see and hear newer material brought to life.

 

Photo: Dean Harries 

 

Despite a large chunk of the set being performed solo, touring musician Matt Kelly steps in for multiple songs, offering extra layers of guitar, and even piano. These elements add such depth to Green’s already dreamy tones, making it impossible to not be mesmerised. However, the clear highlight of the show falls to Green’s utterly remarkable vocal tones. They are quite honestly faultless, with ‘Hello I’m In Delaware’ filling the entire room, and yet sounding so sincerely tender. 

 

Applause fills the room for what seems like forever, highlighting the emotional affect that City and Colour has on his fans. To be able to create such happiness and excitement in an overwhelmingly melancholic performance is a talent, and Green captures that atmosphere perfectly. Quite simply, this performance was utterly and inexcusably perfect. 

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