Thursday, 10 November 2016

LIVE: Jack Savoretti's 'Sleep No More' tour 2016

Jack Savoretti's new record Sleep No More has been out for two weeks tomorrow, and I couldn't be prouder than it reached their highest chart spot yet last week, number six! I posted recently about Jack's performance at HMV Oxford St, but I've since seen him three more times so figured it was time for another post! Last Monday Jack was on the panel for The Wright Stuff and performed a solo acoustic version of When We Were Lovers. I saw a tweet about his appearance on the show a week before and got a space in the audience... they only have about twenty people in so it's pretty intimate and was a very early wake up, but really cool to see Jack in that environment and interesting to hear him chatting about the topics of the day! 

The tour for the new record kicked off the day after the show, and I was reading some great comments about the show online, and really looking forward to his London show (last night). I pondered over it for a while and decided I'd like to go to the Southampton show on Sunday (6th) too, only it sold out. After my weekend of Dawes shows somebody got in touch with tickets to sell on Sunday afternoon, so I dropped everything, booked hotel and trains and headed down South. I'm pretty sure I was the only person in the audience for The Wright Stuff who knew who Jack was before the show, so it made a massive difference to be in the sold out 1700+ cap O2 Guildhall, packed out with Jack's fans! There were a few "oh no, they didn't play...." moments, but with five albums to pick from for the setlist, and playing every single track from the new record, that's to be expected! It was a treat to hear the entire new record live... I'm not sure I've ever seen a band touring a new record and not leaving out a couple of the slower tracks, for instance. The setlist had been meticulously planned, starting off with a run of five or six new tracks to ease us into the evening, opening with the album's title track Sleep No More (cue some pretty impressive whistling from Jack)  and playing Helpless, one of the highlights of the new record for me (video from the night here!) The band left the stage and Jack performed a couple of tracks alone, kicking off with Tight Rope, another of my favourite tracks from the new record. 

They got into a few of the hits - Home, Back Where I Belong and Catapult before heading off stage. Returning for an encore, Jack played alone on keys for the intro of Only You, a really beautiful addition to the track, before they finished up with massive hit Written In Scars, the title track of 2015's stunning album. Suddenly, I heard the first hints of third album track Knock Knock, a welcome surprise as the set was so heavily fourth/fifth album weighted! I met some lovely fans outside the venue after while we waited around to speak to Jack, and after a hug and a few moments of conversation he rushed off to the tourbus. Totally worth the last minute travel (on delayed trains!) and every single penny, I'll never tire of seeing Jack live.....

....which is lucky, as I saw him last night, playing his biggest headline show to date at London's Eventim Apollo in Hammersmith. The show fell on my mum's birthday and I got the tickets as a present, so after a lovely day out in London we queued for a couple of hours and got to the front. A few minutes later and the place was rammed, and while the set was the same as Southampton's, I feel like I got into the show a lot more... the band seemed to be putting as much in (and at both shows, you could see how happy they all were, and how amazed that so many people had turned up) but there's something about the atmosphere at big London shows. Everybody is up for a good time and I knew the new tracks that little bit better, and sang to my heart's content. They were filming the show and kept turning the camera to face the audience, so that probably egged me on a little bit too! I'm so proud of the guys for playing to such a massive crowd, and the big hits went down amazingly but a highlight for me was again the solo section of the set, including Dreamers, the first track from Jack's debut record. Watch below and you'll hopefully get the gist. Beautiful - and a perfect moment to look around at just how many people were there and feel immensely proud of Jack up on stage, putting everything into it, and putting his heart on his sleeve for us all to see.

All in all I've had a pretty cracking time seeing Jack over the last couple of weeks... the tour is still going and while Manchester is sold out, they've still got Nottingham, Glasgow and Newcastle shows coming up too - tickets and dates here. I hugely recommend putting your confidence in Jack to deliver a superb evening, and if those shows aren't close to you, check out the new record and keep an eye out for the next tour! 

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