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C2C: Country to Country 2018 – LANCO BBC Radio 2 Stage live review

A tight show that got the crowd in the party mood.

LANCO
Credit: Jim Wright

Five-piece band LANCO formed in 2013 and have been steadily building their reputation in country music ever since. They recently scored their first number one single in the US with Greatest Love Story, and their debut album Hallelujah Nights, released earlier this year, also rocketed to the top of the charts.

The band opened their show with an ominous intro, featuring heavy drumbeats and wailing sirens in the background, before walking out on stage to huge cheers. They launched into the funky Trouble Maker, which had a really 70s feel about it – think the love child of Stuck In The Middle With You and Play Something Country. Frontman Brandon Lancaster was encouraging the crowd to join in straight away and had a great sense of performance, spinning and prowling about the stage throughout the set.

During their performance the band kept the energy high, choosing mostly to stick to the more uptempo numbers from their album Hallelujah Nights. Amongst the highlights were the singalong Long Live Tonight, with its stompy rhythms and rocky guitars, and the pounding drumbeats of Born To Love You. However, I also really liked Pick You Up, with its shimmery, futuristic piano intro and Brandon’s soulful vocal.

One of the surprise moments for me was Singin’ At The Stars. It’s a slinky, summery song with lots of traditional country twang and a huge chorus, making it perfect for getting both the band and the audience fired up. Brandon encouraged the crowd to clap along at a rapid pace as he walked through the audience, waving his drumsticks aloft and banging a drum on the auditorium floor. He then leapt back on stage and held his microphone stand over the crowd as they swayed and sang with him. It highlighted just what a showman he is and made it feel like a much bigger show.

The band closed their set with Greatest Love Story, which had a really anthemic feel as the crunchy guitars and Brandon’s rich, bluesy voice rang out. It also showed Brandon’s ability as a storyteller and I felt it was a nice bookend to the set by echoing Trouble Maker in its first line. The audience loved it and were singing along at full volume, making it a great note to finish the show on.

Overall LANCO put on a tight show that got the crowd in the party mood. It’s clear that they love performing, particularly Brandon, and they can certainly deliver (particular praise must go to guitarist Eric Steedly). Whilst I might have liked a couple of slower moments, I felt they got the tone exactly right, and would love to see them perform on an even bigger stage here in the UK soon.

 

Set list: 1. Trouble Maker 2. Long Live Tonight 3. Pick You Up 4. Born To Love You 5. Singin’ At The Stars 6. Greatest Love Story Performance date: 10th March 2018

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