Singer Dallas Green walked on to the stage in front of a essentially full Royal Theatre sporting a long beard beginning the set solo for the first few songs. Green then invited his friend and multi-instrumentalist Matt Kelly to perform with him for the rest of the show. It was around that point that the lighting changed to reveal the textured background on stage that had been hidden in darkness early on. Seven chandeliers would later lower from the rafters to add more light for the rest of the show.
Halfway through the main set Green said, “It’s come to my attention some people think all my songs are sad. I’m here to inform you that they can go f*** themselves.” He then proceeded to perform ‘Body in a Box’.
Opening act Marin Patenaude was invited on stage to help perform ‘As Much as I Ever Could’. Unfortunately she wasn’t anywhere to be found, so they started the song without her. Just before the start of the chorus, Patenaude arrived on stage. During a pause following the first few goosebump inducing harmonies of the chorus, Green blurted, “Worth it.”
Before performing ‘Comin’ Home’ Green told the audience “This is a song about calling cards. Some of you remember what those are right?” He proceeded to explain to the younger generation about how calling cards worked. He talked about being in Europe and going to a payphone and getting into an argument with your girlfriend and then the calling card runs out. Then you have to run to the corners store, buy another calling card, go back to the payphone and call the operator to connect you with your girlfriend again to continue your argument.
The encore was four songs before the third song ‘Lover Come Back’ Green invited the audience to stand up and stretch their legs and sing along. Couples all around the theatre could be seen standing with arms embraced swaying to the song. The final song was ‘Sleeping Sickness’ with the audience loudly singing the late Gord Downie’s verse.
After nearly two years without large scale concerts, an acoustic show like City and Colour’s was a gentle ease back into tight crowds and some resemblance of normalcy. Yes, masks were worn when walking about and vax passes were scanned, but concert-goers just seemed happy to see live music. There were a small few who might have been a little too happy, interjecting with overtly loud comments between songs and yelling random nonsense during some songs.
Marin Patenaude, who is signed to Dallas Green’s record label Still Records performed about a 40 minute set to begin the evening.
1. Forgive Me
2. The Grand Optimist
3. Northern Wind
4. What Makes a Man
5. In The Water I Am Beautiful
6. We Found Each Other in The Dark
7. Little Hell
8. Body in a Box
9. Harder Than Stone
10. The Girl
12. As Much as I Ever Could
13. Comin’ Home/This Could Be Anywhere in The World
15. Hello, I’m in Delaware
16. Hope For Now
– Encore –
17. Two Coins
18. Day Old Hate
19. Lover Come Back
20. Sleeping Sickness