Snow Patrol’s Fallen Empire show
by Mark

Ever since I heard songs off the “Final straw” album, this band from Northern Ireland has been on my musical radar. The follow up to “Final straw” (“Eyes open”) has my favorite Snow Patrol track, which happens to be a collaboration with the great Marta Wainwright: “Set fire to the third bar”. I saw them play a music festival, but the show somehow didn’t grab me and I was disappointed.
Fastforward several years, after the release of their latest album “Fallen Empires”. I had another opportunity to see Snow Patrol live and I decided to give them another chance. A friend of mine graciously got tickets, and at the venue it turned out they weren’t arena tickets, but seats. We had seats way up, which for me had one big advantage: nobody blocked my view.
From the moment the band walked up the stage to start playing, it was obvious singer Gary Lightbody was enjoying himself and wanted the audience to have a great time, too. For this tour they had an impressive (laser) light show and huge screens for animations. Snow Patrol kicked off with a song off their latest album, which immediately set the mood for the rest of the evening: upbeat.
Most of the songs off Fallen Empires were performed, and I noticed just one off “Final straw” (“Run”).
Several songs into the set, Gary’s guitar equipment was malfunctioning. While the guitar tech tried to solve the problem, Gary decided to continue the show by playing a song, that doesn’t require him to play the guitar. Anyway, the problem was eventually fixed. Yay!
I liked that he was in a talkative mood, and was reaching out to connect with the audience in some way.
Ram’s Pocket Radio opened for Snow Patrol in Europe, and their bass player (her name’s escaped me – sorry about that) also graced the stage as a backing singer, and sang Martha Wainwright’s part in “Set fire to the third bar”. Speaking of Wainwright, she recently recorded a new album.
A spectacular light show and visuals projected onto huge canvasses kept the audience captured. That, and the fact that at times Gary was sharing some funny stories between songs.
(You can find their setlist here.)

Unlike the first time I saw the band, I enjoyed their show: they are so much more than “Chasing cars”! If you haven’t given their music a listen, I suggest you will.