February 3, 2017
The Metropolitan, London
What better way to reflect and encourage the growing popularity of country and Americana music in the UK than to have a monthly showcase?
Two Ways Home have started something special, modelled after the songwriters rounds that help to make the live scene in Nashville so dynamic.
Four acts took to the stage together, each performing in turn after explaining the inspiration behind the song. With talent to spare, the other performers added a riff or a harmony when the music moved them.
Better yet, the night was free to whoever coukd squeeze in to The Metroplitan’s upstairs bar.
“I really need a wee. It’s good, it helps keep me in time!”
Lewis Fowler spotted the slight drawback to shows in the round – no breaks! For the most part it was good thing, no waiting around for set changes, just music, stories and laughter.
As well as coordinating the night, Two Ways Home shone on stage, especially during gorgeous single Take My Hand.
“He has to tell his alleged love what happened”
Aptly nicknamed Thunderlungs, Ann Bailey was a memorable presence at the inaugural event. Clearly a consummate performer, she was able to joke within as well as between songs, all without missing a beat.
She shared tips and tricks from Nashville, and stories of working with Ward Thomas and Luke and Mel. Highlights included A Town Called Ugly, Push For The Stride and Something About A Woman, which won Song Of The Year at the British Country Music Awards in 2015.
“This is a quiet little emotional song”
With a deft lyrical touch, a sweet voice which cracked in all the right places, and themes of loss, regret and revenge, McGrath was channeling Taylor Swift. For a more local comparison, think a more mournful Kaity Rae, broken down by breakups but fighting back.
Special mention goes to Hell Would Have To Freeze Over and her cover of Rascal Flatt’s Elsworth.
“This song is super meta!”
Ably accompanied on the guitar, Katy Hurt brought a touch of revved up outlaw country to the show.
The meta part was the perfect way to end the show; Hurt and the rest of the room dissolved into fits of laughter as she forgot the words right after singing ‘There’s a song that I love/but I hate it because I still don’t know the lyrics”
All in all a great night for your favourite price: free!
Check Two Ways Home’s Facebook page for details of the next Round Up. At the time of writing, it’s Thursday March 2 at The Metropolitan.
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