Snow Patrol is a band that I like very much. Yes some of their songs are abit sad but they mean alot to me and I think they are beautifully made.
I went to see them in the Liverpool Echo Arena in March with my friends. Their supporting act was White Lies, who are quite popular now I believe. Snow Patrol played a number of very recognisable songs such as:
Run, Chocolate, Final Straw, Spitting Games, Hands Open, Open Your Eyes, You´re All I Have, Chasing Cars.
With each song, Gary Lightbody the lead singer involved the audience into the songs by asking for claps, arm waves and singing. There was an interval, by which at the end of it Gary came out from behind the audience and into the standing audience / crowd. Whats more is that he went into one part of the seating area and sang the song ´Run`to a girl in the audience. Her name was Claire. I was very jealous to say the least. Our seats were miles away actually, but it was still a fabulous performance.
I found Snow Patrol Live to be a very entertaining gig, as there were a number of elements that seemed to just be right. The timing and song set was good. There was a nice selection of fast and slow songs in the right places. I imagine that if it was all slow songs for a while, people would start to fall asleep or start crying or something. As the set was nice and mixed, the audience stayed alert and interested in the concert. Gary´s voice was absolutely perfect and he sounds really good live! In some concert´s I have been to, the voices are shakey and their performance is therefore not so good and actually can be quite poor, but in this case, I was pretty happy. In fact, as the concert went on I was kinda falling in lust more and more!
The lighting of the concert was great, especially because we were so far away. There were nice flashes of greens, red, whites and blues. I loved the way that Gary would introduce each song and by asking the audience to do something or ask how they were. I really felt that Snow Patrol cared how we were!
He did that thing where you ask one side of the room (or hall) to sing one part of the song and another side to sing another part. One thing I did find quite scary was when he was singing some of his songs, his eyes would roll right to the back of his head and wyou wouldnt be able to see his pupils! This was shown on the big screen aswell, so you can imagine that there were some distgusted faces about!
Overall, it was an absolutely amazing concert, even though we were miles away from the stage. The atmosphere was brilliant and the other Snow Patrol fans are ones that i wouldnt mind hanging around with!
Great Band, Great Music!
Snow Patrol started out 14 years ago under the name Shrug, before releasing their first album under the name of Polar Bear, hence the name of their first album 'Songs for Polarbears'. They discovered another act had already claimed this name so they were then force to be renamed, and Snow Patrol was born.
The bands lead singer/songwriter is Gary Lightbody who hails from Bangor, together with band members, Jonny Quinn, Tom Simpson, Nathan Connolly and Paul Wilson. They released 2 albums before they hit the big time in 2003 with 'Final Straw', reaching no.3 in the UK Album Charts.
They followed up that success with the terrific 'Eyes Open' in 2005 before releasing their latest album 'A Hundred Million Suns' in 1998. Their current UK tour finishes in late March before they set sail on a world tour finishing on July 31st. This will be followed up by appearances at the two V Festival shows in August.
I chose the Newcastle Metro Radio Arena as we live around 40 minutes drive away and it's fairly simple to get to up the A1. After doing some research on parking, we set off aiming for the Times Square multi-storey car-park. We arrived around 6pm (Gates opened @ 6pm) and quickly found a parking space up on the second level. To our delight, the car park is handily situated only a minutes' walk from the Arena and plenty of spaces were available.
Despite arriving at the venue fairly early, there were no queues to get in and they were operating a quick system on the doors, which involved a member of staff scanning a bar code on your ticket. This reduced waiting times and everybody seemed to be getting straight in.
We had a quick Diet Coke (£2.30 for a small one) and a visit to the toilets, which again, were plentiful in supply and weren't too busy. There were two merchandise stalls, one large one for Snow Patrol and a smaller one for the support acts.
Once into the Arena it was easy to find our seats, with plenty of stewards available if you required help. The seats weren't the most comfortable in the world, on a par with most of these types of venues and football stadiums, plastic and not very wide! We were seated in block 212, near the bottom of the top tier. This is situated in the rear corner of the venue, which is just about as far away from the stage as you can get, but you still got a decent view of the stage.
The alternative to seating was to buy a standing ticket. These people were all stood inside the central enclosure and you were free to mill about in there to your hearts' content. Very much the option of the festival goer as the earlier you get there, the closer to the stage you can stand.
I really don't think this venue has any 'bad' seats; it's large, but not so big that you are too far away from the action. It was quite cold in there though, and several people were wearing coats. Stupidly, I was just wearing a polo shirt, but it did warm up once everybody was in and the action got under way.
It seemed as though we were sat at our seats for an eternity before any on stage action occurred! I think next time we might think about arriving a bit later, as Snow Patrol themselves didn't start until 9pm. Luckily, there were two support bands to build us up to the main act.
The first band was called 'Fanfarlo'. They played 4 songs if I remember correctly and they were pretty good actually. I liked 'Fire Escape' best and they used a lot of instruments such as trumpets and violins during choruses. It worked quite well and was pleasantly pleased with the value for money so far.
Next up were 'Animal Kingdom' who also played 4 songs, including the excellent 'Chalk Stars' and 'Tin Man'. Look them up on myspace where you can listen to those tracks. So 8 pretty excellent songs so far and we hadn't even started.
I thought the acoustics could have been clearer for these 2 acts, and hoped they'd purposely toned it down to make Snow Patrol better!
The excitement was building now as Snow Patrol edged ever nearer. You could sense the anticipation amongst the almost sell out crowd. And then it was time. The Patrol entered the stage and after some brief welcome's they kicked it all off with the classic 'Spitting Games'. WOW! The clarity was way better than the previous acts, and you could feel the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end as the light show was perfectly matched to the song. A great start followed up by 'Chocolate' and 'Run' which were awesome!
Gary was in good form and had some great banter with the crowd, inducing them into a sing off between the men and woman singing the chorus of 'Shut Your Eyes'. It was great fun! I think the men won ;)
They played some of the tracks off the new album which went down well, but I wasn't as 'au fait' with these as I'd really bought the tickets for my Wife's birthday, and it's her that's the massive Snow Patrol fan! Despite this, I really enjoyed the new stuff, albeit taking a slightly different direction from the anthemic 'Eyes Open' album. Gary then did a solo acoustic performance before launching into the classic anthem 'Chasing Cars' which had the crowd standing, singing, dancing and loving it!
The lighting, acoustics and performance were all top notch and the atmosphere was electric. We really didn't want it to end!
My favourite track of the night was 'Open Your Eyes'. Great guitar riff, piano and fantastic vocals and the light show as the chorus and guitar section exploded into life was absolutely breath-taking! I still get goosebumps when I listen to the song now, as it starts slowly gradually building up into the chorus, then reaching fever pitch when the drum and trumpet finale kick in. It's such an atmospheric song with very emotional feeling, haunting vocals.
I really couldn't recommend this show enough. Seeing Snow Patrol Live was absolutely breathtaking and they were well supported by two very good support acts. The venue was an ideal size to provide an excellent atmosphere and a great view of the action.
The only down side was we didn't get home until midnight as we were trapped in the multi-storey car park for a good 30 minutes. Everybody tried to get to the exit quickly but the sheer volume of traffic meant a long wait. Of course, many people only looked after number one and wouldn't let you out so we had to be patient. We used this time to good effect though by putting our Snow Patrol CD on and singing our hearts out again!
I was lucky enough to have a ticket to see Snow patrol on Tuesday night at Newcastle Arena, and must admit this gig surpassed all my expectations! I have liked Snow Patrol for a few years, but have never seen them live, until now.
I have attended a lot of live gigs over the years, but only ever been to one other concert at the Arena which was last year, and the overall sound and acoustics were terrible for the first half of the concert. Although it improved half-way through, it was not as loud or clear as I expected. Nor was the atmosphere all that good, and I had found myself recalling memories of all the gigs back in the 80's I had attended at Newcastle City Hall, where you were always assured of great sound and even greater atmosphere!
So. it was with some trepidation that I booked tickets again to return to the Arena again last night. My expectations were not high this time, but I was hoping to have a half-decent night at least.
My first surprise was the support act, a band named 'Fanfarlo' who were actually very good, and the sound/ acoustics also very good. I immediately became quite excited at the prospect of how good Snow Patrol may sound.
When Fanfarlo finshed their set, (which I really enjoyed and have in fact looked them up on MySpace today) my second surprise was we were then treated to another support band 'Animal Kingdom' who were just as good as Fanfarlo, and I also have been playing their music today from their website 'WeAreAnimalKingdom.com'. They played a great set, which included two songs I fell in love with immediately - 'Tin Man' and the excellent 'Chalk Stars'. I hope they have some success.
When Snow Patrol finally took to the stage, I was not disappointed at all as they truly sounded fantastic! Singer Gary Lightbody has really grown in confidence these last 2 or 3 years and it showed, as he delivered faultless vocals and seemed totally at ease in front of the sell-out crowd.
Snow Patrol performed songs from their new album, such as Crack The Shutters,and If There's A Rocket Tie Me To It, as well as the old favourites, such as Chocolate, Shut Your Eyes ( where Gary involved the audience for a sing along ), You Could Be Happy, Set Fire To The 3rd Bar, and the two BIG numbers, Run and Chasing Cars, both of which had the crowd singing all the way through.
There was a lot of interaction as Gary laughed and joked with the crowd, which added to the fantastic atmosphere.
The finale was the three-part 'Lightening Strike', which was accompanied by an amazing projected light show. However, I feel for most of us the stand-out song of the night would have to be Chasing Cars.
All too soon it was over and I left the Arena very happy, my faith restored and also feeling I'd had real value for money, having seen three great bands.
I would definitely go to see Snow Patrol again.
A week or so ago, I stumbled through the front door, kicking off my boots and dumping my coat on the banister. It had a been a long day at my new job and I was facing the added dilemma of when to take the days holiday I had accrued and would lose if I didnt use it by Christmas. Of course, I wanted to use it to maximum advantage in terms of Christmas shopping, but I didnt want to use it too soon. As I was pondering this and before Id even made it to the kettle, Dad appeared at the top of the stairs. Um, youve
. tickets to see the arctic something? he said. Being fluent in Dad speak, I was delighted to realise after a few more lines of conversation that his friend had gone on a last minute holiday to Scotland and thoughtfully left me her tickets for Snow Patrol.
Snow Patrol arent (or should I say werent?) a band that I know particularly well, but Im one of those people who just loves live music. I knew a couple of songs and there was no doubt in my mind that Id enjoy it.
Not so The Boyfriend. I dont know who they are he whined, I dont wanna go .. And why would I want to take someone who didnt want to go? I picked up the phone to call my brother or his little sister (both of whom love Snow Patrol) and he snatched it out of my hand. Even at the age of 30, he cant stand the possibility that she might get to go in his place. With his dad sniggering in the background he sulkily agreed to go.
The show being at Wembley Arena, we decided to use the late finish to our advantage and book a hotel. Although we are only half an hour from Paddington here, missing the last train leaves you in for a cold and uncomfortable night and catching it means an ungodly scrap over the taxis at the other end. I reasoned that if we woke up fresh and ready to face the day in London, we would get a lot more Christmas shopping done.
Snow Patrol was on a Tuesday meaning I had to leave work a little early. My boss signed the holiday form to cover Wednesday, agreed after making sure that an early finish meant post-lunchtime and I was free to get going by 3pm. Despite a few closures on the underground, we stuffed down some pasta and dawdled to the station. It said on the tickets that the show would start at 7.30. Being a seasoned veteran when it comes to this kind of thing (and also the kind of person who is perennially late) I was in no hurry. The Boyfriend knows better than to rush me, so arrival time was nearer 9pm.
Wembley Arena is most easily reached from the revamped Wembley Park station. We arrived to find it buzzing with other Snow Patrol fans. This turned out to be very lucky for us, there is only one sign in the station to indicate an exit for Wembley Arena and as we stepped out into a freezing night, we were reminded by the police to drug dealer ratio that Wembley is not a nice area to be wandering in the dark. We joined the herd heading for the arena and noticed what a mixed bag Snow Patrol had attracted. There was a noticeably wide range of ages and a very nice atmosphere; the pleas from the touts gave the impression that this diverse audience meant a sold out gig.
After a walk along the allegedly pedestrianised route (they have that block paving, but you still have to cross roads!) Wembley Arena loomed out of the dark with illuminated jets of water and neon jacketed staff. There was no queue to speak of for seated tickets (which we had) although the line for standing looked fairly daunting. We underwent the compulsory searches and the theft by someone we couldnt argue with of the top from our water bottle. This may seem a lot of preamble, but for me the anticipation was key. With no further ado, we were in our seats and awaiting Snow Patrol.
Wembley Arena reminds me of a cross between the end of term assembly (I went to a big school!) and an end of term disco (the volume and smell of sweat). For anyone who hasnt visited it, this cavernous sports hall is rectangular in shape with seating on three sides. We were lucky with our seats, they were on the end of one side, meaning that we could simply turn sideways and enjoy a brilliant view. The only problem was the fat guy next to us blocking it. Straight after the support acts (Field and Elbow) finished, he was on his feet and ready. He proceeded to stand for the whole performance not something I would normally object to at a gig, but he was exceptionally shaky on his feet and we went home wearing his beer. However, we did laugh it off and were able to climb up the railing behind us to see over him.
The 19th was the second night of Snow Patrols tour. The previous day theyd played to a packed Wembley for the first time and there was a definite impression that they were amazed with their success. They opened to cheers with Spitting Games, then the lead singer Gary Lightbody addressed the audience. This left The Boyfriend and I looking at each other in confusion. Wed thought Snow Patrol to be a Scottish Indie band, but this was the first time wed heard the guy speak and he sounded Irish? Well he is, as I have since discovered, from Belfast. Luckily, thats an accent I quite like - he seemed to have a lot to say. It ranged from repeated thanks to declaring his love for the (male) drummer, causing The Boyfriend to pull the kind of face that straight men use to convey anything they consider as dubiously sentimental.
By halfway through, the crowd had really begun to warm up, The Boyfriend had realised that he did in fact recognise several songs, I was loving it and finding that even though I needed to use the toilet, I really didnt want to leave our little metal nest. Then Chasing Cars! This isnt one of my personal favourites, but it would appear to be the one song that everyone knew. The audience drowned the band out, the main floor (standing area) really began to move below us and all eyes faced front. Fat Guy was almost weeping with emotion. Looking down at the crowd below, I marvelled that the orange light made their heads look like a sea of baked beans, punctuated with stars of light as they filmed the stage with their mobile phones.
I turned to say to The Boyfriend that people should just appreciate it here and now blah blah but he was busy erasing things from the memory of his Samsung in order to capture the moment. Someone else did a much better job of filming the evening in question: <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tcMS6vi4oWY> provides a fantastic view of the band on the night we were there and its almost certain youll recognise the song.
Immediately after, they covered a song I didnt recognise and several hundred people, including me, bolted for the toilets. On my return, other songs including Chocolate were equally well performed and the evening passed in a flash. The final song was Youre all I Have and my absolute favourite. A bouncy, bubbly song which I listened to on my i pod whilst interailing, this one had everyone on their feet. It was a great song for Snow Patrol to finish on and I didnt even care that Fat Guy was stood on my feet and handbag. It was a brilliant encore.
We left straight afterwards, climbing over the seats to beat the crowds and legging it for the station in time to catch the last train. Judging by the numbers behind us and the tube problems which had plagued the evening, there were a lot of cold people who didnt fare quite so well. The Boyfriend whipped out his phone and began to annoy me and the rest of the carriage by watching his new videos again and again. (Look at Fat Guys arm darling! He really loved that song!) Luckily most passengers were almost comatose from festive drinking and his battery gave up at Baker Street. In the name of preventing public nuisance, I didnt let him start singing the songs until we reached the hotel room. It should be noted that he was still humming them the following morning while I was in the shower.
Ive seen well over a hundred bands live and Snow Patrol stood out as modest, not too flashy and a great live performance. We both had a brilliant night and this review is dedicated to the lady who kindly gave us the tickets THANK YOU!