Photography by Marie-Claire D
I still remember when I first heard them, unfortunately, as I would have wished for an earlier discovery. Like many people who watched that infamous Grey’s Anatomy 2006 episode, I heard Snow Patrol’s “Chasing Cars” and I became a fan. Needless to say that attending an future concert in Montreal was inevitable. And on April 16th, there I was at the Metropolis, the awaited moment materializing part of the Fallen Empire Tour. The one where I’d “ride with (them) and just forget the world” and share that moment with you in writing. I admit, I am biased, but who cares – enjoy!
The night premiered with UK singer-songwriter and the brain behind the hit “The A team”, Ed Sheeran, to the pleasure of his numerous fans who flocked the Metropolis’ floor. It was a short wait (thankfully!) before the lights dimmed to darkness revealing a huge animated crystal ball pivoting to music and dancing lights on a giant screen where the the word “MONTREAL” appears and the silhouettes of the band members gradually walk by to take their place, and finally frontman Gary Lightbody. The pounding intro riff of “Hands Open” blasts through the speakers, fully waking the crowd who took no time to raise their hands open, motioning to the rhythm. Snow Patrol showed their love for Montreal chiming “Take back the city” and the crowd went with it, followed by “Crack the shutters” where Gary revealed our city as being their top 5 to perform. “This isn’t everything you are” ended a pumped beginning mellowingly easing into “Run” and back up to “The weight of love” and “In the End” from their last opus “Fallen Empire”.
Gary invited back on stage Ed Sheeran on the song “New York”, and pointed out his solemanship for “Set the fire to the third bar” which came next with “Make this go on forever”. Ever-smiling, he made a choir of the crowd to chime out the end of “Shut your eyes” gradually raising the volume level to pop the roof off “all the way to Winnipeg”, he asked. The following track was dedicated to the crowd – the fan favorite “Chasing Cars”, where the Lightbody seemingly became emotional unable to finish the first chorus. I myself became so from that touching performance.
“Chocolate”, “Fallen Empire”, the tribal-rendered “Called out in the dark” with a tam-tam player whom I didn’t even see coming joined the band, and “You’re all I have” were to conclude the night, but the room still had hunger for more… but then so was touring band.
Gary Lightbody gave a grateful short speech to his bandmates dedicating the beautiful “Life-ning” to them followed by “Open your eyes” to finish with the upbeat trigger-jumping “Just say yes”.
And it was over. It was a great concert with a graceful ending, where Snow Patrol left the concertgoers with a sweet after-taste and satisfied smiles bright like a hundred million suns.