Concert Reviews

Kacey Musgraves with Yola at Sony Centre for the Performing Arts

Photos by Neil Van

Texas singer/songwriter Kacey Musgraves returned to Toronto last night for her second visit this year in support of last year’s Golden Hour, her third album.

Golden Hour was a bit of a slow burn to catch on despite it being filled with solid songs & hooks and great production. Since her last visit when she sold out the Danforth Music Hall in January, she won album of the Year at the Grammy Awards, giving Musgraves some well-deserved attention outside of her country base. Her sold out show at the Sony Centre brought out a pretty diverse crowd and seemingly everyone knew every single word.

Musgraves started the night with “Slow Burn”, Golden Hour’s opener. Strumming a guitar in front of an appropriately elaborate lighting backdrop, the full band was revealed as the song built and from there she thoroughly entertained a very rapturous crowd for over 90 minutes.

The focus of her set was Golden Hour, playing the whole album, but also offering up a pair from each of her previous albums. Highlights were many and not restricted to “Butterflies”, “Happy & Sad”, “Merry Go Round”, Golden Hour” (that she hilariously cheekily ended by singing “Golden Shower”) “Oh What a World” and “Space Cowboy”.

She threw in two covers; a surprising romp through Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive” and a run through Brooks & Dunn’s “Neon Moon”, a song she updated with the legendary country duo earlier this year that was just as high energy dance as the disco staple.

The sound was pristine, her light show at times was deliriously bonkers, her songs were infectious, but the highlight was her personality. She did allude to the show being potentially cancelled due to some issues at the border but thankfully she and her band made it through. She really did very successfully create a real positive and happy vibe – probably one of the happiest gigs I’ve been to. I’m sure the grin on my face may have baffled fellow subway commuters after the show.

Not only did she create this vibe, she (seemingly) effortlessly blended country, pop and dance music into one delicious frothy mix that the crowd adored along with our host. Closing the night off with a very high spirited “High Horse”, a shockingly good Monday night party sadly had to come to a close.

Opening the night up was Yola, who won the crowd over with her Tina Turner gone country songs. Her voice was particularly strong. Aside from being tipped off on the woman by local record store Pop Music, I walked in curious and ended up thankful I showed up early to catch her. Hopefully she returns and amasses the crowds she deserves.

About author

Concert reviewer at Live in Limbo.