It’s been a while since Snow Patrol toured and a sold out Arena beckons them back to Birmingham. There are two supports tonight, unfortunately I miss the first due to the combination of traffic and Friday, these are the bands that could be the next Snow Patrol and it frustrates me to miss them. I’m pleased to catch the second support Kodaline.
Kodaline have an atmospheric minimalistic stage and lighting. They are playing to a sell-out crowd. Scary! yes…Everyone is here early to see them. Kodaline start off with a very upbeat number Follow Your Fire. They produce a sound that makes your heart race and your emotions fly, vocals and intense lyrics combined with huge, soaring choruses. The lighting is dark and atmospheric all through, suiting their performance and style. They play an amazing set which includes favourites The One, Raging and the hearty All I Want.
Now the main event. I’m so excited to see Snow Patrol live and this starts with them all running out onto the stage. Gary Lightbody is on fire, beaming smiles, almost as if he is in disbelief with the sell-out. It’s been six years he tells us.
Starting out with Take back the City, Chocolate and Crack the Shutters they build on songs from albums over the years. The crowd happily sing along, this is turning out to be a wait that was worth it. Now its gets even more exciting for Open Your Eyes as everyone stands and sings in unison, this is a sight I will never forget.
Just as you thought it couldn’t get better, they play Run. Easily one of my favourites which is sung perfectly. Yes there are lots of sing along parts and the crowd are engaged throughout, making us feel a part of something special. “Light up, light up, As if you have a choice” exactly as he sings each line, the crowd can’t help but sing along, concluding the song with a standing ovation.
It calms down a little now as they play a song they tell us took the longest of any song to write, yes, 5 years and “ I Know what you’re thinking……..this song better be good” as everyone including Gary laughs. Followed by “yeah, Gone away for six” years and come back with confidence ahaha” as they proceed to play Life on Earth. This is clearly something special the visuals peak and everyone here is in awe.
Snow Patrol are a band that just keeps on giving. Shut Your Eyes is another sing along moment, this time Gary “What we’re going to do now is something great”, as he calms the rowdy bunch down someone shouts…“ WE LOVE YOU!!!!” he responds “ You only love me because you don’t know me” they respond “We still love you” he responds “Have you listened to any of the album”….. before continuing, as the crowd and the band start to sing Shut Your Eyes, which increases in volume each time building to a loud finish.
We have the amazing Chasing Cars and Your All I Have to close the gig. These are solid, no words can describe the emotion and excitement on display. They now choose to play a calmer number What if This Is All the Love You Ever Get which when listening to this, I recall back to Kodaline’s closing song All I Want. Kodaline were a fantastic choice and the ideal warm up for Snow Patrol.
The concert ends on Just say Yes, a great song, but I think I expected a bigger finish it’s almost like being dropped down to reality before having to head out into the cold streets.
Snow Patrol have timeless classics, while being modern, clean and crisp and tonight they stood the test of time. Gary shows his gratitude to his record label who took a chance on them when no one else would with a hearty Thank You to Jim Chancellor and later he tells us “it’s the best night of the tour and that’s since August”.
You know what, we really believed him!
Snow Patrol Set List
Take Back the City
Crack the Shutters
Don’t Give In
Open Your Eyes
You Could Be Happy
Life on Earth
Make This Go On Forever
Shut Your Eyes
Dark Roman Wine
The Lightning Strike (What If This Storm Ends?)
You’re All I Have
What If This Is All the Love You Ever Get?
Just Say Yes
Reviewer/Photographer: Chris Bowley