Dan Wilson at St Pancras Old Church
Semisonic’s own Dan Wilson, on tour to promote his new studio solo album Love Without Fear, serenaded the audience at St Pancras Old Church last night with his acoustic guitar, rusty but even and smooth voice, and cathartic songs that instil in you a blend of nostalgia, love and sadness. Alongside him was a keyboardist who played on a grand piano and trumpet for select tunes. The church is a small space for a gig, but the perfect atmosphere for sitting and listening vicariously, and understanding Wilson as an artist. It was as if he were Pete Seeger or Bob Dylan, moving the crowd with his passion.
The set featured hits from the new album, including Secret Smile. Wilson even played Semisonic’s nostalgic hit Closing Time. His acoustic version of Someone Like You struck a chord as he told the story behind the song, about how famous producer Rick Rubin asked if he would like to assist Adele with writing it. After being reclusive and writing sad songs for so long, Wilson went ahead and agreed: the song became a hit, and earned him and Adele a Grammy award.
Though the venue is tiny, the sound was great – the acoustics were fantastic with a nice flow of reverb and echo resonating and moving all over the cosy church, a joy for the ears. Wilson’s singing voice sounded the same as it did back in the late 90s with Semisonic, and had so much emotion and soul behind it that it made it seem as though he hasn’t aged up until tonight.
Wilson talked in between songs about his life story: how he got to where he is now in his solo career. He is a very humble artist, and he gave us a performance that was more about interaction than for dancing and going wild. It was indeed an emotional night, but one that had a positive outlook, leaving the crowd on a happy note.
Photos: Adam Bennett
For further information about Dan Wilson and future events visit here.
Watch the video for Loving You here: