Apr 28, 2018

Brian Fallon - 9:30 Club

Category: Live Reviews




9:30 Club

Washington, DC

 Brian Fallon Set List: Sultans of Swing (Dire Straits cover), Forget Me Not, Behold The Hurricane, Little Nightmares, Come Wnader, Lady Killer, Bell Bottom Blues (Derek and the Dominos cover), Neptune, My Name Is The Night, Sugar, Watson, I Witnessed A Crime, Downtown Train (Tom Waits cover), Rosemary, Wonderful Life, Smoke, Etta, ENCORE:  59, Don’t Think Twice (Bob Dylan Cover with Caitlin Rose), Prayers

 “This one goes out to the twitter people who asked for this.”  That’s how Brian Fallon took the stage just before he ripped into a rockin’ rendition of the Dire Straits classic “Sultans of Swing”.

 Brian Fallon performed a sold out show at D.C.’s best rock club, the 9:30 Club on a mellow Saturday evening.  There was a line which snaked past the club awaiting entry into the venue; it felt like the audience were entering the club at turtle pace because the club did not fill in until the start of Caitlin Rose’s set.

 Caitlin Rose was an odd opener.  The Nashville native and her backing band were a tad boring at times and the first few songs were plagued by technical issues which caused Caitlin to not play her guitar.

 Brian Fallon took the stage a little after 10:15 PM and his nearly 2 hour set was an interesting mix of singer songwriter/punk/hard rock/rock n roll which blended elements of Tom Waits, Bruce Springsteen, Social Distortion, and Dropkick Murphy’s.

 Several times during the show Brian would talk to the audience and crack jokes, babble about cars, Morrissey, the state of music, and his intellect is mixed with his quirky sense of humor.  Fallon acts like an old man at times and his hat looked like it was bought at an Archie Bunker garage sale.

 Musically speaking, the Brian Fallon band sounded excellent.  The guitar tone was clear and sharp, the drums were loud but not overbearing, and the vocals were never under the instruments.  Fallon’s voice has a Tom Waits style and his lyrics are dark yet uplifting.

 “Don’t Think Twice” by Bob Dylan was performed during the encore and Caitlin Rose joined Brian on vocals.  Prior to the performance an audience member yelled a negative comment about Bob Dylan which led Fallon to comment that he couldn’t help if the fan had bad taste for not liking Bob Dylan.

 “59” by Gaslight Anthem was performed during the encore on piano, solo by Fallon and came off as a touching/dark breakdown/reinterpretation of the original version.

 Fallon took off his Van’s slip on shoes at one point in the set  and commented that he was wearing colorful socks; white christmas lights were strung about the stage and action figures sat on guitarist Ian Perkins amp.

 Fallon’s latest release, “Sleepwalkers” served as the reason he brought this performance to DC and the crowd sang along to almost every song Fallon delivered on this night.

 The crowd at this show were extremely polite, mannerly, and treated each other with respect.  There was no moshing, no crowd surfing, and no violence.  The crowd was there to enjoy music and celebrate all things Brian Fallon; Mr. Fallon delivered a high energy, no frills set that relied solely on musicianship and well crafted songs.

Author: Bob Suehs