John Grant – Vicar Street – Live Review – 09-11-15
We are the Greatest Mother Fuckers, according to John Grant at least, or so he told us on numerous occasions last night. He is one of those artists that spends his time telling the audience how good they look and how nice they are, and we loved it! This was his first gig in Dublin since the release of the ‘Grey Tickles, Black Pressure’ album, which is an enjoyable release but doesn’t quite hit the heights of its predecessors.
There was an eight piece on stage last night with keyboards, guitars, bass and drums along with three backing singers. John was delighted to have the three ladies on stage, as in his mind having backing singers meant he’d finally made it as an artist. It’s hard to argue the point.
The last time Grant played Dublin there were guest stars with Conor O’Brien and Sinead O’Connor joining him on stage for a memorable version of Glacier. I had a good eye on the side of the stage, but this time out it was just John. The set was very varied in sound, ranging from quiet piano songs to synth pop numbers and a whole world in-between. The louder songs were the more impressive ones, with the quiet ones a moment to relax in-between.
One of the best things about seeing John live is that you get to appreciate his lyrics, which are always inventive and humorous. This time was no different and a number of the songs from Grey Tickles… sounded considerably better in a live setting.
The set ended with an impressive double bill of GMF and Disappointing, before a quiet encore of mostly piano songs. John was almost dragged off stage at 11pm but was allowed one last song with a rendition of Caramel. It was an enjoyable set, which had many great moments but never quite reached the heights of his last visit.
Holly Macve was the support on the night. She played guitar and keyboard along with her own haunted voice. There was a touch of Marissa Nadler and possibly even Lana Del Rey about what she does. It was very enjoyable set, even if the crowd seemed intent on talking over it.
Grey Tickles, Black Pressure
You And Him
Guess How I Know
Pale Green Ghosts
Where Dreams Go to Die
Queen of Denmark
No More Tangles
Drugs (The Czars song)
Photos by Mud