CONCERT REVIEW: Lewis Capaldi – O2 Academy Glasgow 7th December 2019

Photo Credit Gavin Ross

Opening up for Lewis Capaldi at the 02 Academy in Glasgow are ‘Balcony’, a 4 piece band who play an thoroughly entertaining set of up-tempo guitar and synth based pop music that reminds the crowd of the slow and chilled out music often played in clubs but is presented with a confidence that is far in advance of the run of the mill bands on the circuit.

Their short set was well received, and the Glasgow crowd gave the band a well-deserved rousing reception at the end of their set.

The band won over the crowd quickly and did themselves no harm at the end of their set when they made their way into the crowd handing out souvenirs and supplying sweet and other confectionery to the crowd before leaving for the evening.

It is little wonder, such was the reception to Balcony, that Chris Hawkins of BBC Radio 6 has highly praised their “Dreamy and Floaty” brand of music.

Balcony are :

Jamie Ward

Jack Bennett

David Royce

Johno Donnachie

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Brighton based ‘Grace Carter’ grew up in Brighton and the evidence of Lauryn Hill and Nina Simone can clearly be heard in her music as she performed a 30-minute set for the crowd in Glasgow.

Having released her debut EP ‘Why Her, Not Me’ in 2018, it is clear that a huge number of the crowd already know the music they are listening to and are happily singing along throughout the set.

Grace Carter has clearly learned a strong stage croft from supporting the likes of Rag’n’Bone Man and in 2018-2019 she headlined two tours of the UK and Europe.

The very appreciative crowd showed their warmth at the end of her set and I am certain that Grace Carter is a young singer we will hear much more from in the future.

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The name Lewis Capaldi has become known in terms of superstar status the world over in a very short space of time. It was back in 2017 that Capaldi himself was calling it ‘mental’ that he had sold out King Tuts Wah Wah Hut in Glasgow yet, some 2 years later via appearances at Glastonbury, a Grammy nomination and a second top of the bill at 2019’s TRNSMT festival in Glasgow, it was only right that Lewis Capaldi would be announced as a TRNSMT headline act for 2020.

It’s a smaller venue that we have come to this evening to see Lewis Capaldi and, as the crowd snaked around the building in all directions, there could not be many attending the 02 Academy in Glasgow who were not aware that this may be the last time they see Lewis Capaldi in such an intimate venue and that the huge areas are surely beckoning.

With the crowd at fever pitch before the show even began, and singing along to the music coming over the pa, the screams as the stage goes dark almost tear the roof of the building.

The 4-piece band make their way onto the stage but, with no sign of the man of the moment, there is a sudden announcement over the pa system and a hush falls on the venue.

The announcer turns out to be Lewis Capaldi himself as he politely thanks everyone for coming along to the show and wishing them all a happy time.  As he finishes his short speech there are huge explosions of confetti all over the building and, in the midst of all this, Lewis Capaldi sets foot onto the stage and takes in the unbridled adulation going on around him from the crowd.

Opening his set with ’Grace’ from his debut album ‘Divinely Uninspired To A Hellish Extent’, the crowd are singing along to every word and are clearly enraptured by the show unfolding in front of them.

From the outset of the show it is clear that Lewis Capaldi has not lost any of the sense of humour he is well known for possessing and if it’s not his little quips to the crowd then it is his cheeky smiles and grins between songs as he takes in the applause.

 

Making his way through his set, the show had such warmth that it felt as that Lewis Capaldi was actually in your living room at home and singing just to you.

Closing the evenings entertainment with an unbelievable sing along to the massive chart topper ‘Someone You Loved’, the crowd filtered back into to the cold and wet Glasgow evening but with the intention of taking up the amazing offer that Lewis Capaldi had made during the show of heading to a local Greggs bakery to have free doughnuts and pastries on the tab he had set up with the store.

An amazing performance from a young star with a huge career in front of him and one who clearly knows how to look after his fanbase.

Lewis Capaldi headlines the main stage on Sunday 12th July at the 2020 TRNSMT Festival in Glasgow.  Do not miss your opportunity to catch what is sure to be an amazing live experience.

Lewis Capaldi 

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Trnsmt

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Photographs by Gavin Ross  Review by Craig Cooper