Editors @ The Olympia Theatre by Sean Smyth (20-11-13)-23-baner

Editors at The Olympia Theatre, Dublin on November 20th 2013

With eleven years behind them and four studio albums to their name, Editors have a bit of room to play with for tonight’s setlist. There’s the possibility of a Bruce Springsteen approach and mix it up completely every night or the standard heavy leaning from their most recent album with a sprinkling of “the hits” scattered throughout. Thankfully Editors are in a crowd pleasing mood tonight so we’re treated to a night of welcomed fan favourites.

Keen to make an impression, Editors hit us with a hit-heavy opening. The throbbing bass swagger of Sugar doesn’t ease us in so much as it smacks us in the face and demands our attention. It’s a focused well-placed opener that showcases the more mature, considered approach Editors have taken of late. That’s quickly followed up by the jittering urgency of Someone Say’s, the anthemic Smokers Outside the Hospital Doors, the frantic chimes of Bones and the industrial synth jabs of Eat Raw Meat = Blood Drool. The opening five songs are a pretty good summary for tonight; so much so that it tends to get a bit samey. The first half of the show comes across sterile and quite mechanical. Musically they’re razor sharp. There’s not a single note out of place from an instrument or Tom Smith’s near-constant baritone.

A Ton of Love sees everyone loosen up and have a bit more fun. For such a new song it gets a surprisingly good reaction and stands out as one of tonight’s highlights. It’s Editors doing their best turbo-charged U2 impression and an ideal oppurtunity for Smith to throw himself aimlessly around the stage. It also feels far too big of a song to be played in the hallowed confines of the Olympia Theatre.

Crowd interaction tonight is kept to a minimul, with a sparing “thank you Dublin” here and there. Given how confident Smith appears on-stage, it’s a bit surprising. The flip side to this music first approach is far more bang for your buck with Editors still on-stage past the Olympia’s usual 10.30 finish.

Surprisingly Nothing is the most considered song of the whole set. Played live it’s a different entity entirey to the album version. Here the strings are replaced with a slow, measured build-up from the rest of the band. It gathers momentum as it goes, instead of jumping from 0 to 60 like Munich or Bullets. It reaches it’s peak with Smith standing atop his piano belting it out. It appears to be a fitting closer until the dirty disco synth intro of Papillon kicks in. The somewhat reserved crowd are now all on their feet, dancing the night away.

Tonight is a mixed bag. Songs from ‘The Back Room’ and ‘An End Has a Start’ were played with passion but feel like they were played out of courtesy. Surprisingly, the majority of tonight’s highlights come from ‘The Weight of Your Love’, hinting that there’s plenty of life left in Editors.

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Photos: Sean Smyth