Ward Thomas @ Brooklyn Bowl 3rd December 2016

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Performing for the C2C Christmas Social was the impeccable Ward Thomas. Located within the o2 Arena is the lovely venue which is the Brooklyn Bowl. Anyhow doors were at 6pm, opening the evening was Hattie Briggs and the act whom proceeded Ward Thomas were the incredible CC Smugglers. Originally I had hoped for an early finish due to the fact the Jingle Bell Ball was taking place as well but my hopes were dashed.

Anyways the headline set consisted of 17 impeccable tunes which focused heavily on the sophomore record Cartwheels. It was exactly the same as the set which they played on the Cartwheels tour. Things them opened up with the beautiful Good On You and this was a lovely cut which Catherine and Lizzy faultlessly delivered. There was actually an acapella feel to this whimsical number. After plenty of applause it was then time for the enchanting Where The Sky Is. Now everything about this was utter perfection. Catherine and Lizzy’s vocals meshed together sublimely resulting in something that left me in an utter daze. The dreamy Where The Sky Is was faultlessly delivered and it had been perfectly crafted. “Hello London. Thank you so much for coming” Catherine said before they got stuck into Boomerang. Now this has to be my favourite from the Cartwheels album along with When It’s Not Me. Now this was literally flawless, the vocals packed a fierce punch and those succulent lyrics were so infectious. Still this was a fun filled tune which had me hooked from the word go. “How you doing this evening?” Catherine then mentioned to the audience before they delved into Dirt And Gold. This was an uptempo jam with lyrics which left me in a complete trance. The highlight for me had to be the rip roaring chorus “You’re on a crowded city pavement flooded with rain/ You see a sick dance floor and it’s calling your name/ AHey! Oh yeah/ To you there’s no such thing as a dead end street/ It’s all about a part of how you gotta follow your dreams/ AHey! Oh yeah/ Oh looking down an unpaved road/ Everyone else sees dirt but you see gold”. Next they embarked onto the light/ fluffy Material. This cut was so cute, the vocals were luscious and those delightful lyrics left me enthralled. Following on it was something that left me in a daze and this being the ballad Almost Easy. Now this was so beautiful with a dash of sadness and it was aided by soft/ gentle vocal delivery “If I was only losing you/ Goodbye wouldn’t be so brutal/ It would be almost easy/ We built castles in the clouds/ We planned a thousand futures out/ Now your packing up and leaving”.  After some talk about the C2C festival and how they’ve been coming for the last 3 years it was then onto oldie The Good And The Right. This was a toe tapping number with startling vocals and punchy lyrics “What happened to the good?/ What happened to the right?/ We’ve got to drag it back/ We’ve got to keep it in sight/ Have we been led away?/ Been taken for a ride?/ They say it’s the only way/ But it still ain’t right”. “We say this is the coolest song we’ve ever written. Because it is the first country song to be on Radio 1” Catherine then said before they got stuck into Guilty Flowers. The reason this became the first country song by a British act played on Radio 1 was down to the fact it saw Ward Thomas cross over into the pop market. This superb number  was an addictive jam with vibrant verses and a uptempo chorus which you feel compelled to sing along to. “I should’a known, I could’a told you you were lying/ Fool me once, fool me twice, oh, stupid me/ I didn’t want to doubt, didn’t want to find out/ But now I know/ Coz you came home with/ Guilty flowers/ Guilty flowers”.  The tempo was then taken down a notch for the following 2 songs. Safe was a spellbinding tender ballad. Those dreamy lyrics left me hypnotised and the vocals were rather mellowing. It was then onto a number which they wrote 2 years ago and this being the song which made them create their 2nd album. This being Cartwheels and this being a mellowing tune which made the hairs on the back of my neck stand on edge. The lyrics were spectacular and the vocal delivery was rather breathtaking “I’ve been doing cartwheels/ Anything to save us/ Anything to make you notice me”. Next it was time for a song about small town gossip and this being When It’s Not Me. Now this is one of my favourites from the new album. Anyways this punchy tune oozed plenty of sass and it hit me like a ton of bricks. The catchy lyrics and upbeat melody gave When It’s Not Me an anthem feel “It’s easy/ To point the finger in the other direction/ Easy/ Staring through the window from the outside in oh/ Mother told me I should play nice/ Karma’s a bitch so you’re gonna pay a high price/ Easy/ When It’s Not Me/ When It’s Not Meeee/ When It’s Not Meee-ee-ee/ Oh-oh-ohh”. Plenty of singing was required for Push For The Stride. This was a catchy feel good tune which had me moving on the spot. Delivered at an infuriating pace this was an enchanting number which resonated plenty of country vibes. Following on was he whimsical Proof. This stripped back tender tune was so spine tingling. Catherine and Lizzy’s fluffy vocals were rather sweet leaving me compelled at the same time. The rip roaring Lose Me hit me like a full on force, those sumptuous lyrics were rather upbeat and the vocals were impeccable. Things then came to an end with Carry You Home. This was a magical tune about friendship and being the one that your friend calls out to if things go wrong “When it all comes caving in/ And you can’t be brave again/ Whenever you need a friend, need a friend call me”. Once over they all left the stage only to return moments later for the 2 song encore. The songs that rounded of this extraordinary evening were the soothing Who I’m Not which resonated plenty of chilled out vibes. It was then followed up by the blitzing Town Called Ugley. Now this tune was so infectious and plenty of fun filled vibes oozed from it.

SET LIST

Good On You
Where The Sky Is
Boomerang
Dirt And Gold
Material
Almost Easy
The Good And Right
Guilty Flowers
Safe
Cartwheels
When It’s Not Me
Push For The Stride
Proof
Lose Me
Carry You Home

ENCORE

Who I’m Not
Town Called Ugley

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