The Fray at The Oympia Theatre, Dublin on Tuesday 23rd of September
Tonight is the first night of The Fray‘s tour of Europe, the UK and Ireland and the band seem ready for the stretch of shows ahead as they perform a seamless and effortless (if slightly unexceptional) concert.
First up are Raglans, performing in the Olympia for the first time to their hometown crowd. They open up to a relatively static audience but as they perform their infectious and catchy songs the crowd gets slightly more attentive and involved. With songs such as Fake Blood and Natives getting the bigger reactions, newest single White Lightening also shows favour. Unfortunately the band’s so far impressive set had to be cut slightly short due to some technical difficulties, but they battle through and throw in an impromptu cover of Len’s Steal My Sunshine.
The Fray perform their set in a faultless manner, every song is perfectly inoffensive and simple, that’s not to say it’s not enjoyable – just that it’s pleasant but not captivating. Throughout the night the crowd is not the most enthusiastic but both bands do well to get them slightly more involved, which entirely changes the atmosphere in the room for the better.
Despite the somewhat melancholic nature of The Fray’s set, the mood in The Olympia is far from deflated. The crowd’s favourites are relatively predictable with songs such as You Found Me, All At Once and How To Save a Life getting loud crowd participation. Refreshing songs such as Love Don’t Die change the monotony slightly with the more upbeat, cheerful elements to it. With a little bit of banter in between songs, front man Isaac Slade gets the crowd laughing and cheering and his overall stage presence is pretty compelling.
Over an hour and a half of set and unfortunately the word ‘nice’ ultimately comes to mind; it was an enjoyable concert, The Fray do what they do well, they put on a decent show and musically the band are relatively impressive, but it’s all just a bit unremarkable.