Train at Islington Assembly HallCultureMusicLive music
It was gig of high emotion in Islington last night, as American rockers Train played to a sold-out crowd – with one couple even getting engaged on the stage.
The San Franciscan group played an uplifting set for an appreciative audience, with lead singer Pat Monahan inviting the newly engaged couple up to dance to the ballad Marry Me.
Train only released their tenth studio album A Girl, a Bottle, a Boat last week, but the devoted crowd were already singing along to hit single Play that Song. In fact, the decade-spanning tracks on the setlist showed that this band – who first achieved chart success in the early 00s – continues to appeal to fans of all ages.
Frontman Monahan held the audience with his cocky swagger and incredible vocal skills, showing off by throwing smartphones into the crowd after taking selfies for begging fans, and reducing the hall to silence by stepping away from the microphone to perform a haunting rendition of You Better Believe.
For those who might not be in to Train’s hooky pop numbers, there were times when they proved themselves to be a seriously proficient group of rock musicians. The lead singer was part of a Led Zeppelin covers band before creating Train, and it’s clear through the group’s high-energy stage presence and togetherness that there’s a lot more to be heard than the radio-friendly Hey Soul Sister they’ve become most well known for in recent years.
“We’re gonna play that again because it seemed like you guys liked it a lot,” was the jokey quip that followed the rapturous reception of Angel in Blue Jeans, and a cover of the Bowie/Mercury Under Pressure showed off the impressive vocal range of the whole band, who came together to perform a beautiful tribute to the two rock icons.
Finishing with a trio of the rockers’ most well-known hits, Hey Soul Sister, Working Girl and the anthemic Drops of Jupiter, this was a gig pumped with energy to a crowd who could have stayed all night. Monahan closed the show by earnestly thanking the fans for sticking with them over two decades, hoping the band would still be writing new material 20 years from now; something that, judging by last night’s performance, could well be the case.
Photos: Guifre de Peray
For further information about Train and future events visit here.
Watch the video for Play that Song here: