Sometimes it can feel as though a venue is just made for specific artists to perform in. Almost like the aesthetics of a venue feel as though they compliment the music that is being created. It’s rare enough that the actual design of the building seems to suit an artist, and yet it was hard to think otherwise in the Olympia Theatre last Friday as Cork outfit Talos took to the stage to play their biggest headline show in Dublin.
Regular readers of this blog will know that I’ve been a fan of the Cork band for a long time now. There is something undeniably powerful about the music that songwriter Eoin French creates, and within the hallowed walls of the Dame Street venue, it felt as though the sounds were elevated again for a truly wonderful night of live music.
You could tell from watching the band on stage that this was a big deal for them. Talos are a band who have been routinely garnering praise over the last few years, and this was the culmination of years of hard working and incredible songwriting. They disappoint, and what followed was one of the best nights of music that I experienced all year.
Again, one of the most compelling things about Talos when you see them live is the incredible vocal ability of their front man. French’s high and haunting lyrical tone helps to develop an atmosphere of ethereal other-worldliness that compliment the introspective nature of the lyrics wonderfully. Across the night, they are perfect, seemingly effortlessly delivered, it is hard not to be completely enthralled with the delivery of each song. The front man is also a captivating figure on stage, prowling the stage and moving between keyboard, guitar, and no instruments.
Sometimes it’s easy to forget just how good the discography of the band is. Songs like Runaway, This Is Us Colliding, The Light Upon Us, among others, were expertly performed and left the audience in attendance captivated.
The support acts on the night also helped to build a powerful sense of community in the venue, and first up was singer/songwriter Rosie Carney. The Donegal based helped to set the scene with an emotional and beautiful guitar performance.
The other support act was something that I have never seen at a live music show before, and it was fantastic. For a long time, Dublin spoken word artist Emmet Kirwan has been one of the leading lights on the spoken word scene in Ireland and most prominent social commentators in Ireland as well, and it was an absolute treat to see him perform two spoken word sets across the night. His performances included an incredible rendition of this phenomenal piece criticising the treatment of women and unplanned pregnancy in Ireland.
This gig seemed to be a long time coming for Talos, and they couldn’t have looked more at home on the bigger stage. Talos have the ability to create a strong sense of introspection through their songs and leave people thinking about their lives and loves in ways that most other acts can only dream – something that transmitted to this massive live stage flawlessly. They’ll continue to grow, it’ll be fun to watch.