Newcastle has often been commended as being one of the top party cities in the UK. You just have to watch MTV’s Geordie Shore to see where that reputation might have come from.
And besides the city’s beautiful bridges, a good night out has become part of the draw for frequent groups of revellers who flock to the region each weekend. It’s the kind of city where you can walk into a bar, pull up a pew and strike up a friendly conversation and don’t be surprised if the person sat next to you buys you a pint of beer.
Well, tonight folk-rock outfit The Felice Brothers find themselves a long way from their home city of New York, as they get ready to spend an interesting Saturday evening in Newcastle. And the sentiment explained above certainly rings true this evening for the US-based quartet.
Mid-set when the band invite the audience to get a round of beers in, they hadn’t quite anticipated the level of Geordie hospitality they would receive. A constant stream of pints are passed over the security fence, and even a few shots of whiskey. To which James Felice declares to the locals that they are ‘Generous sweet lovely people’.
Based upon the band’s experience of Newcastle this evening, there are certainly a few Hometown Hero’s in attendance. Whilst the inclusion of drinking song Whiskey In My Whiskey also feels pertinent and spurs a mass singalong from the Tyneside audience.
Highlights in tonight’s show include a heartfelt rendition of Let Me Come Home, the up-tempo Lincoln Continental along with the beautifully poetic Katie Dear. You can almost imagine yourself lying in the grass at an outdoor summer festival listening to the latter. Whilst the inclusion of Special Announcement is one of a few tracks in the setlist to feature from the band’s latest album Undress.
The Felice Brothers switch things up with the hard-rocking Plunder, during which James sinks his heart and soul into his accordion playing. And following an ad-hoc request from a fan in the audience Ian Felice even sings out a few bars of Irish traditional number Oh Danny Boy, much to the crowd’s pleasing.
Love Me Tenderly stands out as being a bit different from the rest of the set. Whilst a dramatic airing of Silver In The Shadow closes out the main set properly.
Tonight The Felice Brothers deliver a setlist which can be best described as timeless. The band don’t go chasing commercial trends or the mainstream. The group traverses a wide musical landscape that is steeped in and influenced by the great singer/songwriters of yore. This evening’s show is as entertaining as it is inspiring.