The Shires, Limelight 1, Belfast
The Shires kicked off their My Universe Tour this week to a sold out crowd in the Limelight Belfast and it was sold out for a good reason.
The British country duo have won nothing but admiration from their peers and UK country followers – we interviewed them two years ago before playing at McHugh’s Basement. They are the first UK country act ever to have a top 10 album in their home country, The Shires have been at the forefront of the British Country music spearheading the movement of UK bands making music inspired by US country artists.
I watched , sang and danced along on Tuesday night wishing I had worn my cowboy boots (or at least a pair as sparkly as female vocalist Crissie Rhodes) as the duo worked their way through a impressive set list. Warming the crowd up with hits State Lines, All Over Again and I Just Wanna Love You. Popping in a surprise cover of Robbie Williams Angels which prompted a sing along and a lot of love from the crowd.
Reaching their first peak with Friday Night which came to life with the backing of the club environment. Bringing the temp down with a heart-wrenching but beautiful performance of Daddys Little Girl but bringing the pace and song-along back with a A Thousand Hallelujahs.
I have to be honest I lost track of the set list! I was enjoying myself so much I didn’t care. I was immersed in this pop country atmosphere and I loved it. If you have read my reviews before you will know I have very eclectic musical taste (in fact I was only watching Bastille at the start of the week) but after witnessing bands such as Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweat and Chris Stapleton at Coachella, as well as taking a big crush on the entire Nashville cast this year country music is slowly developing into a little soft-spot of mine.
Overall The Shires rocked, they had every person in the sold out crowd smiling cheering and wishing it was the weekend. If this is the start of the tour I would love to see them further along the route when they are settled in to tour life.