Train @ o2 Academy, 21st October, 2017

A tinge of excitement mixed with nostalgia danced around the O2 Academy. Most people who venture to the venue are obviously excited for the show, and yet the Train audience brought an excitement paired with emphatic nostalgia.

The band Train formed in 1993 and so for the past twenty-three years they have produced numerous hits that have captivated the hearts and minds of fans.  With so much music spanning so many years, Train’s music has paralleled major life moments for many, bringing about this energy to the Academy on a cold October night. Train with all of their hits delivered a wildly exciting and engaging show that delighted fans that have waited years to see the soundtrack to their lives performed.

London based Hannah Grace opened the night with a stunning bluesy pop mixture. While her set up was sparse her powerful voice transfixed the waiting audience. After a short turnover Pat Monahan and the rest of Train opening with uptempo “Drink Up.” The 80s pop vibe was upbeat, an explosion of energy to kick off the night. Monahan’s silky smooth voice is not tarnished by usage or age; rather he sounds just like he did when the band first started in the smoky San Francisco clubs. “50 Ways to Say Goodbye” and “If Its Love” continued the electric vibes, with fans clapping along and waving their cell phones in the air. A slightly funky “Get To Me,” with a strong percussion undertone and airy keys, moved the crowd to silent adoration as the song washed over the room.

A cover of “Stop Dragging My Heart Around” followed an acoustic version of “Angel in Blue Jeans”. During the cover Hannah Grace joined Train for a sweet and sultry take on the iconic song. “Save Me San Francisco,” “Meet Virginia,” and fan favourite “Call All Angels” brought a cinematic quality to the set. Each song grew in production and sound, a crescendo of noise and dancing. The 50s tinged “Valentine” brought a new sort of sound to the otherwise modern pop tunes. “Bruises,” a clear fan favourite, brought a country undertone to the light and joyous pop tinged set.

Quick paced “Drive By” found everyone jumping, a new type of energy that is only noted during live shows. The acapella “Always Midnight” was an incredible sensitive and emotional moment, stilling the breath in the room. The moment of stillness was inverted as the bad launched into “Marry Me” and “Parachute,” well known singles that brought soft rock pop to the stage. “Hey Soul Sister” and “Play That Song” followed a mash up of current hits with the encore bringing  “You Better Believe” as well as “Drops of Jupiter” sandwiching Queen and Led Zeppelin covers.

Train brought an absolutely lively and exciting show to the Academy. Wrangling together a slew of hits from their illustrous career, the band delivered an emotional and high-energy set that wowed fans.


Reviewer: Kylie McCormick

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