Passenger inspires at Scala
Passenger is the moniker of British singer-songwriter Mike Rosenberg, who has released three albums since his band (of the same name) disbanded in 2007. His last album, All the Lights, was released last summer, prompting considerable growth in his popularity.
A sold-out Scala was packed with devoted fans, some of whom had waited at the front of the queue for six hours in order to take a spot at the foot of the stage and stare into the eyes of their songster. Indeed Rosenberg is rather likeable as a performer, and is a great raconteur, engaging his audience with sweet anecdotes and life experiences between songs. Clearly aiming to break down the barrier between star and fan, on occasion he would unplug his acoustic guitar, step away from the microphone and a deliver a track so personally, you felt Rosenberg was singing in your living room or around a camp fire.
Passenger’s story telling is vivid, and he is able to transport the listener into the lives of his characters with an often dreamy approach, delivered with a vocal twang similar to the likes of Ben Howard. Often the lyrics are incomprehensible as Rosenberg gets lost in his own world of emotion, but this is all part of his charm-offensive on the crowd, most of whom already know his words – and prove it when prompted to sing along.
Hate had the crowd in rapturous laughter as he delivered the lines “Hollyoaks is a mistake” and “I hate The X Factor for murdering music”, exposing his rebellious side and appealing to the musical purist. The surprise of the night was Rosenberg’s rendition of Eye of the Tiger, which he played effortlessly into Let Her Go, his fan favourite and biggest hit to date.
Passenger’s music is thought-provoking, easy on the ear, agreeable and relatable. There is something satisfying about seeing a man with his acoustic guitar isolated in the centre of the stage projecting heartfelt thoughts. Mike Rosenberg does this well enough and it’s nice to see hard-working honest music being celebrated in such a way.
Photos: Adam Imiolo
For further information about Passenger and upcoming events, click here.
Watch the video for Let Her Go here