Gig Review: Picture This, 3Arena

Picture This

The first act to ever sell out five consecutive nights at the 3Arena, Picture This performed to over 70,000 Irish fans last week. I attended the first of the five nights last Wednesday, which also happened to be my 22nd birthday. Lewis Capaldi had been announced as the support act not long after the tickets sold out and you could say that it made my birthday one that I would definitely remember.

My friends and I arrived at the venue a little later than planned via a packed out Luas (Irish tram) and Lewis Capaldi was already on stage. We had only missed two of his songs, but I was a little gutted to have missed some of his chat between songs. Lewis was brilliant as always but it just wasn’t the same as his own show as the staging and effects were very minimal and he just had to sing some of his songs and off he went.

I’m gutted that I haven’t got tickets for his upcoming UK tour this year, but I have absolutely no idea where I’m going to be in November/December so didn’t want to purchase tickets as I’m hoping that I won’t be in the UK. I reviewed Lewis’s London gig in Scala about 16 months ago now (feels like yesterday) which you can read here.

Five nights at the 3Arena? Are you mad?

When Picture This first announced five consecutive nights at the 3 Arena, I thought, Surely not. I love them and think they’re great but five nights in a row? One Direction didn’t even do that and look how big they were. Did Picture This really think they had that big of a fan base? I was extremely dubious.

However, they surprised me, their critics and probably the majority of Ireland by selling out all five nights in just a matter of minutes. Credit where credit is due.

The band put on one hell of a show, opening with Modern Love and then singing songs from both first and second albums. Frontman Ryan Hennessy brought singer Charlotte onstage for one of the duets on the album, Someone To Hold. Charlotte had been the support act for the UK leg of Picture This’s tour and came to Ireland to perform this song with the band. It’s one of my favourites from the new album and was made even better live.

Not just a pretty face

I’m a huge believer in talent over commercialisation. I don’t care for an artist that fits a certain aesthetic, looks good, produces good pop songs and can dance but can’t actually sing live. I won’t be paying to watch a two hour dance routine (sorry Jason Derulo). If the person/band can actually sing as well live as they sound on their recordings then you’ll find me at their concerts. Think Lewis Capaldi, The 1975, Little Mix (even though they dance a lot, they’re great singers), Sam Smith, Adele and even Westlife.

I can tell you now that Ryan Hennessy sounds just as amazing live as he does on the album (if not actually better). He has one of my favourite voices of all time and from his performance last Wednesday, I think he’s going to be one of the best frontmen in Irish music history.

We go again

Last week was my second time seeing Picture This as I saw them headline Belsonic last summer in Belfast. It was an outdoor music gig and I didn’t know that many of their songs back then. Now I would say I’m a very big fan and listen to their music on the regular. I’m seeing them again in a few months’ time, again in Belfast at an outdoor music gig at the Botanic Gardens.

You can find Picture This’s two albums on Spotify here and I would recommend Hurt Nobody, Everything Or Nothing and Smell Like Him. Or find them on Instagram and Twitter.

If you want to listen to my favourite Scottish musician, you can find Lewis Capaldi’s Spotify page here and listen to Somebody You Loved (it’s been the UK’s number one for five weeks now so I’m going to guess you’ve already heard it), Bruises and Lost On You. And you must do yourself a favour and follow him on Instagram and Twitter because he’s one of the funniest people I follow. His debut album comes out very, very soon too so keep an eye out for that!


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