Country Music Week is well under way this week with acts from the US and the UK performing at venues around London. One venue that’s going to be filled pretty much every night is The Borderline, one of London’s most intimate spaces that allows the audience to get very close to the artists performing. Last night I went along to see a night headlined by Lindsay Ell and before she came on stage, I caught the always-charismatic UK Country duo Holloway Road aka Robert Gulston and Jack Cooper.
Before the guys even opened their set, they suffered a slight technical issue when their microphones didn’t work. That was quickly resolved and Jack kept the audience entertained with his witty banter. Once the technical issue was out of the way, the duo launched into I Won’t Fall and they quickly captured the attention of the audience, who up to that point had been chatting away to one another. Armed with their acoustic guitars, Robert and Jack filled The Borderline with their tight harmonies and great tunes.
Throughout their 8-song set, Holloway Road showcased the different sides to their abilities. Little Harder, taken from their Roots EP, was an early highlight and it’s one of my favourite songs from the band. The upbeat track is a slice of contemporary Country that sounds distinctly British and has a catchy melody that you can’t help but sing along to. Another highlight, from the same EP, is the slower Good Thing Gone Bad, which shows a softer side to Holloway Road and is one of their finest songs to date.
Elsewhere in the set, Holloway Road performed recent free download Caught and their new single Under Cover, which is a bit of a departure from the sound we’ve heard from them before. The set came to a close with We Said So, a song that puts a British spin on the sound that has dominated US Country radio the past few years.
In between songs Jack and Robert exchanged plenty of banter, which is one of the things that makes the band so endearing. They poked fun at each other frequently with Jack at one point telling the audience he was looking for a new band mate to replace Robert. They had the audience in stitches and their warm personalities add to their great catalogue of music.
Holloway Road started the night off perfectly last night. They have worked hard to cultivate a fanbase and the pay-off for that was evident last night. The audience lapped up their music and it’s no surprise that Holloway Road are one of the shining jewels in the crown of UK Country music. I for one can’t wait to hear what the guys come out with next.
Set list: 1. I Won’t Fall 2. Little Harder 3. Caught 4. If She Falls 5. Good Thing Gone Bad 6. Get Lit 7. Under Cover 8. We Said So Performance date: 4th October 2017