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Brian Fallon rocks out Liverpool O2 Academy for UK leg of tour

by Andy Nicholas. Published Wed 23 Nov 2016 10:33

Brian Fallon ended the first week of the UK leg of his tour at Liverpool’s O2 Academy on Sunday, with the former Gaslight Anthem frontman showing he's got what it takes to go solo.

Fallon’s traded the punk rock ties that Gaslight Anthem fans have become accustomed to for a more punchy, almost country vibe which lends a resemblance in parts to American greats like Tom Petty - an inspiration Fallon has often spoken of – whilst keeping alive the classic American rock music that have previously brought on comparisons to Bruce Springsteen.

It would’ve been easy for him to turn up on this tour and reel off a number of the Gaslight Anthem hits which have gotten him to where he is today, but Fallon’s proved the encapsulating storytelling that’s led to his success lives on in his debut solo album, Painkillers. A brave move which shows the confidence he has in himself and his musical ability to not perform one Gaslight Anthem song on the night.

Highlights of the show were the opener and album title song, 'Painkillers', and the album’s first single 'A Wonderful Life', as well as the acoustic ballad 'Nobody Wins' and fast-paced rock song 'Behold the Hurricane'. A personal favourite was the catchy acoustic number, Smoke.

Fallon also performed covers of Katy Perry’s Teenage Dream and Bruce Springsteen’s I’m on Fire.

Fans of Fallon from his Gaslight Anthem days won't have been disappointed with the lack of songs he played from his time with that band, as it’s plain to see that although he’s taken his career in a different direction, he’s just as good at producing and playing music as he ever has been.

The sound of his debut solo album can be heard as a logical next step from the band’s last album ‘Get Hurt’, with the slower, more powerful songs with just as much meaning as the raw sound of The Gaslight Anthem’s first punk rock album 10 years ago.

Away from the music, Fallon’s instant repartee with the Scouse crowd provided constant entertainment between songs through the show. From being peer pressured into crying ‘F**k Donald Trump’ in his best Scouse accent (which wasn't actually that bad!), to a back and forth with a Liverpudlian about his favourite football team, Spurs, with a tiny bit of insight into why he won't show his boxers at shows thrown in too.

Dead Swords and the wonderfully weird – yet weirdly wonderful – Chris Farren supported Brian and The Crowes, which was the perfect drum roll for the main show.

Fallon brought an aura of an everyday man who's got an unbelievable talent, relating on a personal level with the crowd throughout. The songs he performed are a creative piece of art, yet he speaks in such a humble manner which leads you to believe he's just like you or me. It just makes his character all the more endearing.

The concert was a true reflection of the talent he possesses, and we can hope that there's more to come. Whether it be solo or with The Gaslight Anthem, Fallon’s songwriting is a form of art that should be enjoyed by everyone for years to come.


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"Brilliant article Andy, you are an inspiration to me. Keep going, you are the best!" Connor Moore, Liverpool around 1 year, 7 months ago