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Monday, 19 January 2015

Christie Connor-Vernal and Roadway - NHC Music - 17/01/14

So far the NHC should be four instore acoustic shows into 2015, but there seems to be a curse on the Sundays.
Last week Genesee had to pull out due to ill health and this week it was the turn of AWOL with an injury, but never fear as both shows, and a set from Arno Blok, will all be sorted out for the future.

Meanwhile what can be said about the Saturday nights though?

Well we kicked off with GR Harrow last week (review here) and he seriously blew us all away, and then just as we thought we could catch a breathe Christie Connor-Vernal and Roadway snatched it from us with a couple of performances that hit every button and ticked every box.

As a coupling they are a rock aficionados wet dream, and I wouldn’t hesitate in going on the record to say that both could give any established act - that people pay silly money to see - a run for their money.

In fact it’s actually difficult to convey how good this show was.

I’m no spring chicken and I have been going to see bands for decades all over the country and sets such as they played are up there with the best that I have witnessed.

In some ways the environment does lend itself to the performances being that bit special though.
As one audience member said about the shop that ‘it’s like an underground speakeasy’ and another claimed that ‘if CBGBs was a record shop then this would be it minus the dog shit on the floor.’
We can live with praise like that, and it’s better than having to claim it myself.

Anyway in the case of Roadway they are not known for playing acoustically, but within the NHC, and in front of a supportive audience, they were free to give the material a run through and see how it feels resulting in what was a stunning set from them.
It’s most definitely another string to their bow and hopefully they are considering exploring acoustic angles on more material as their recorded output that is full on electric certainly deserves to be heard stripped down.
It simply adds a whole new dimension to their sound, and it’s one that most fans – if not all – would welcome with open arms.

If for some reason anyone reading doesn’t know who Roadway are then you really should rectify that straight away.
Especially if you long to hear Classic Rock played with passion and attitude as these guys have both in spades.

There’s no downside to what they do and well written material performed well never goes out of fashion.
Next time they are in Glasgow I’ll be looking to attend and hopefully in the future they will return to us as the door will always be open for them.

And Christie?
Well if you needed a one word review it would just say ‘wow’.
The progression in literally everything since the first time I was told to check her out is partially mind-blowing.
As a songwriter and as a performer everything just keeps getting better and better.
Last time the full band experience had me asking why she wasn’t already in the public eye and gracing larger stages, but equally her solo acoustic shows are similarly of that level.
Surely the next step on the ladder is in reach.
The new songs, and the maturity in approaching the subject matter therein, would seem to indicate that the tipping balance from struggling artist to successful artist has been reached.

Well fingers crossed etc.

A last minute addition to the performance was the inclusion of a duet with Dougie McSween of Scarlets, a band that Christie is currently collaborating with, and this was once again that little magic moment thing that the shop lends itself to.
We were striving to create an atmosphere that anything could happen in and with this song we got that.
It was only a week ago that they started working together and as far as I am aware there has only been one singular working session between them and already the results are far beyond what could have been expected.

All I can really do is jump back and say again that it’s difficult to convey how good this show was.

Everyone should take a bow, the artists and those who turned up for this and made it such an incredible evening.

You’re all heroes. 

Event pages for the next live in-stores.

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