You may have noticed that I’ve been AWOL for a while. I don’t really have any excuse. I actually kept meaning to blog, but reality kept stopping me. My head is a little bit of a strange place in which to live at the moment, and I wanted to spare you guys from my convoluted thought patterns.
But last night me and a friend of mine from high school watched The incomparable Script and that definitely warrants me breaking my blogging dry spell.
The night started with Colton Avery, a musician from Phoenix, Arizona. I’m going to come right out and say that his voice was not to my liking. I’m not saying that he wasn’t talented, I’m just saying that his voice wasn’t for me. I could barely understand him. He has one of those soul voices that you need to have an attuned ear to comprehend. I don’t have one of those ears, so his set sounded like a whole lot of melodic humming.
But, he has an incredible story. Avery was at the end of his tether as a musician, ready to throw in the towel and get a “job”. But he was asked to play a gig and he swore that that would be his last one. He gave his CD to the band he was supporting , hoping that they’d simply listen to it. A few days later, that band got into contact and asked him, Avery, to go on tour with them. That band was The Script. So Avery had a theme to his set: “follow your dreams because you never know what could happen if you just hold on for one more day”. It was a pretty uplifting message. That, coupled with the fact that the guy had an awesome sense of humour made his set pretty memorable. I just wouldn’t be able to tell you what any of his lyrics were.
Midway through the break between Avery and The Script, a sort of queue started forming near the side entrance to the General Admission area. Like one of those guards of honour things, where the crowd forms a path. From where I was sitting, up in the stands, I couldn’t see how far the guard extended, but that wasn’t my big question.
“What’s going on down there?” I asked my friend.
“Oh, the band comes in from over there,” she answered, like it was no big deal.
Now, I’ve been to my fair share of live gigs and not once has the band ever braved the crowd to make it to the stage. These boys from Dublin are a hell of a lot braver than everyone else I’ve ever seen live.
Admittedly, I was pretty sceptical that the band would actually do it. Until the lights dimmed, the crowd cheered, and a procession of neon green flags announced the entrance of The one and only Script. The crowd parted like the Red Sea (in this case, the Green Sea?) and the boys leapt on stage.
I felt like a bit of an imposter, to be honest. I haven’t kept up with The Script as much as I should have. Not since Science & Faith. But, trust me, as soon as rego’s done and dusted I will be buying both albums and listening to them non-stop. The Script, for me, is the epitome of soulful music. Every single song of theirs means something. You can argue with me that all music means something to someone, but The Script is totally different. In every single song that was played, I could feel the emotion behind it. And that is a rare thing in the age of nonsensical mechanical songs that are only created to be played in nightclubs.
There was not one off song, not one moment of this concert that these men weren’t captivating. I was on the edge of my seat for the whole thing. Yes, I was seated. My friend has knee issues and definitely would not have been able to stand for the duration of the concert, but trust me, I was still dancing. I was just chair dancing. I got to dance on my feet during “Hall of Fame”, but that was because everyone around me finally stood up. I would’ve stood up sooner, but I didn’t want to impede anyone’s view. Everyone around me paid for the experience, and I wasn’t going to ruin it for them.
Sometimes, though, The Script can get a bit much for me emotionally. Their songs are so raw that there are a few songs that I actually can’t handle listening to. The best example of this, for me, is “For The First Time”. It hits a little too close to home, and so I can never make it through the entire song. I start feeling too much. Which is not a bad thing. However, when they played this song, there was no escaping the memories and the emotions that came with it. It was brutal, but I suppose cathartic in its way. Good music, Honest to God music that’s been written with heart and soul is supposed to effect you. So even though I was struggling to escape my past, to be in the moment, I feel like this is a testament to just how incredible The Script are as a band.
Concerts, for me, are all about the sense of community. Everyone has paid to be in the same room, listening to the same band. Everyone is connected. And it’s a feeling that only exists when listening to live music. I love it. That sense of belonging can lift you up, no matter what’s going on in your life. I realise I sound like a sappy romantic right about now, but that is why I go to as many concerts as I do. Music is so important. And when it’s a band like The Script, a band who actually harness their thoughts and feelings and transform them into beautiful melodies that in turn speak to millions (at least) of people, concerts become an almost spiritual experience.
One of the most amazing things happened during “You Won’t Feel A Thing”. Danny, the lead singer, jumped off stage, taking a camera (or his phone, I was too far away to see) into the crowd and started filming himself with the fans. Not only did he go into the General Admission area, but he went into the stands. Nowhere near where I was, but he still made the effort to go that far away from the stage. He tried to engage with as many people as possible, and I loved him for that. People in the stands are just as big fans as those in the front row, and so to have the artist actually try and include us in the concert? That was magical.
There was so many other moments I could talk about, like Danny doing a lap of the General Admission area during the final song, but they aren’t really relevant. The ambiance was the most important thing, and I think I’ve rhapsodised about that enough. Bottom line, if you are a fan of music that makes you feel something, no matter how painful, I highly recommend you head to a Script gig. There aren’t many shows like it.