Photos by Moe Yang.
Vance Joy made his return to Vancouver kicking off the “Lay it on Me Tour” in He continued support of his new single, alongside Amy Shark and Chappell Roan. Stepping into the Vogue Theatre in the heart of Granville Entertainment District, I could hear the angelic voice of the first artist to hit the stage, Chappell Roan.
The 19 year-old from Willard, Missouri received a very warm welcome from Vancouverites after she explained that this was her first ever show on tour, which is a very special moment for any artist. She showed good amount of confidence on stage, given her lack of experience, and even pushed through even with some issues with the sound and only being able to hear static in her earpiece. The way she moved on stage was comparable to that of Lorde given the way she let the music dictate her every move. She exchanged banter with the crowd which lead to her decision to try poutine, and received tons of support from the Vancouver crowd. Going into this knowing little to nothing about either of the openers gave me a chance to expand my catalogue a little bit more and I was blown away by this first act. She had the ability to effortlessly hit her high notes and owned the stage with a sweet but powerful innocence. You could here exclaims of “she’s so cute!” coming from the audience as she hurried off the stage.
Amy Shark was next up, a singer/songwriter from Australia who brought a set chalked full of energy. The crowd fell in love with her accent and was forced to disagree when she stated that “Canadian accents are far better than Australian accents.” She brought a dance party to the Vogue with her song “Blood Brothers” and told a story of when calling someone’s home phone was a thing which lead into her dreamy song, “Weekends” which brought a warm feeling of nostalgia.
A blue light dawned on the stage where only silhouettes of the band could be seen and the melody of “Fire and the Flood” could be heard leading up into the epic intro to Vance Joy. He powered through his set taking little to no time between songs only sometimes giving brief descriptions. Songs like “Wasted Time” and “From Afar” got a chorus of Vancouverites singing along every word. He continued through his catalogue with “Red Eye” and then a couple of solo songs that allowed Vance to share this intimate moment with the audience where he explained how he almost stole some Lynyrd Skynyrd lyrics from his uncle’s Facebook post. He took a moment to thank the Vancouver crowd for kicking off this tour then continued on from right where he started letting the music speak for itself. The latter half of the set showed the most energy of the night when playing “Georgia,” and a very Vance Joy cover of Bieber’s hit, “Sorry,” and the live debut of his new single “Lay It On Me.”
The encore brought a chorus of Vancouverites singing along to “Riptide” and “Mess is Mine” that had a very peaceful summer camp sing-along feel to it. The band took a bow with Vance front and centre and received a very warm goodbye from the audience. Vance Joy always brings a crowd full of love with him, and the times I’ve seen him I’ve always been amazed at the way he can make every single person in the crowd feel at home and put a smile on everyone’s face.