LOS ANGELES, CA- The guitar starts strumming in the darkness and all the lyrics flood back into memory. It gets brighter and goose bumps cover my arms as Gary Lightbody sings out “All this feels strange and untrue… I’m getting so tired and so old… I want so much to open your eyes, because I need you to look into mine… Tell me that you’ll open your eyes.” One of their iconic songs that resonates just as much today as it did when I heard it at 23, knowing nothing at life at the time and now grown up. They are the types of songs that become part of your adventure, your life, your spirt. I couldn’t help but sing along with the biggest smile across my face, trying to capture every moment into memory.
As they start into “Chocolate” all of their memorable songs the come flooding back into my mind. “Take Back the City” amps the energy in the room up a notch and by the time they dive into “Don’t Give In”, from their new album “Wilderness”, the goosebumps on my arm return as live struggles pop into mind … into my cells … and I’m reminded of not giving up and how I’ve not been broken by the cruel world.
A bit of a rewind, the guitar strums come back leading into “Run” and as Gary sings, “You’ve been the only thing right in all that I’ve done… Light up Light up as if you have a choice, even if you cannot hear my voice, I’ll be right beside you dear…” I’m reminded of the remnants of loves lost and the beautiful, broken pieces of those memories that we carry with us over the years; the beautiful, broken pieces that pull you through happy moments in time, warming your soul.
The emotions in the venue swelled when Minnie Driver stepped on stage to accompany Gary for “Set Fire to the Third Bar.” It’s a simple song that, to me, was always powerful in tone and lyricism, full of passion and desire spawned from a long distance love that’s reunited with warmth and comfort. As if the emotional tension in the room couldn’t get more deep, “Shut Your Eyes” painted a picture of somewhere ‘caked in snow’ a ‘secret space of wealth.’ I’d be lying if I said that every time I heard that line I didn’t think of being somewhere in cold packed snow. Snow Patrol’s iconic song “Chasing Cars” provides a bit of a reprieve from the sentimentally, moody lull, taking me back to a time where there were less worries in life and more mistakes to be happily had.
“You’re All I Have” had me yearning of a wild, unknown love that gives you strength in the midst of chaos. When anything goes and you have nothing to lose. That was contrasted with the in-the-moment sentiment that “What If This Is All the Love You Ever Get?” exudes, when loves have been lost, mistakes have been made, and there is more than nothing to lose in the game of taking chances. That feeling… that powerful feeling … is something that everyone experiences at some point in life. It’s that moment when you ponder whether fairytale ending ever existed as the reality is is that love has slipped through your fingertips over and over again through the years.
Snow Patrol’s music resonates through the years, regardless of the generation they reach. Their music is real, raw and not always pretty. Gary Lighbody’s humor throughout the show, in the middle of some pretty deep lyrics, constantly brought out smiles throughout the venue. The band is real, humble and makes you feel like you’ve known them forever.
Read the review and see the photos on blurredculture.com.