sat 24/08/2019

Ray LaMontagne, Royal Festival Hall | reviews, news & interviews

Ray LaMontagne, Royal Festival Hall

Ray LaMontagne, Royal Festival Hall

Grammy-winning recluse finds his voice and it is country

Ray LaMontagne: not just some preppy muso who has grown a beard

Rock-folkies can sure be snobs. Even though New Hampshire-born Ray LaMontagne is still relatively unknown over here, there are still purists who view his records with suspicion. They feel the voice is just too huge, the sound too commercial. The irony is that no-one courts attention less than LaMontagne. Last night he delivered the entire concert from a static spot just to the left of the band. And apparently he’s as withdrawn offstage as he is on. But the RFH saw him focussed. Focussed on finding the right way to channel that part-bluebird, part-bear he has for a voice.

The Secret Sisters used their Southern Gothic harmonies to transport the Festival Hall to a place far away where God is very real and the air hangs thick with swamp fog and Spanish moss

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Comments

what a wonderful review. I couldnt agree more. What an amazing show and an amazing man. I agree the sound was excellent and the crowd very respectful. Not sure i'd listen to Secret Sisters by themselves, but enjoyed them with Ray. I'm waiting for him to do 'Burn' and totally make me fall to pieces - but in the meantime, it's 'Shelter' that totally destroys me live - I don't know what is is but it just gets me. thats the first time i've heard him speak so much - that comment about country music cracked me up.

I've been lucky enough to see Ray 3 times now over the past 6 years, and last nights performance was probably the best of the bunch! Not only do the "officially "named Pariah dogs add to Ray's performance, but they seem to give him the confidence to...well, speak! Thats the first time I have actually heard him utter more than 2 words during a performance....he should do it more, he's a funny guy! He's the real, genuine article, and had the whole Festival Hall captivated with his unique sound.

I saw him in Bristol on Thursday and he was fantastic. Totally captivating. Played the new album almost from start to finish. Secret Sisters were great too. Everley Brothers but sisters. best night of music for a long time.

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