Last night saw these five men blow the roof off the Alley Theatre in Strabane (musically of course, not literally!!).
Five young men from ‘humble beginnings in a sleepy County Tyrone village, they are now one of Ireland’s most sought-after live bands.’ And last night I saw just why they have been described as such.
Logan McCool, Kiel Cathers, Christopher Speer, Jesse Darragh and Darrell Nelson are a musical set to be reckoned with. They really are contemporary and traditional all rolled into one. And they just nail it.
Prior to the lads on stage last night the support was the delightful Michael Gillespie and Zara Montgomery. Together they create a sound unique, haunting and exquisite. And last night they didn’t disappoint.
But we were there for The Logues and they certainly didn’t disappoint either. From the moment they came on stage until approximately two hours later, they had The Alley come alive with an eclectic mix of music and song. They describe themselves as ‘phycho ceilidh’, ‘whiskey-soaked folk’ and just plain old ‘partying music’. But whatever the term of their style is, it’s unique and it’s their own. And it works.
Having lost my Dad very recently I was still unsure about attending the gig. But my sister and I are so glad we went along. These lads, with their brass ensemble gave us a real reason to smile and to really enjoy ourselves last night. On the road home, my sister said to me, ‘Dad would have loved that.’ And that was special. He would have loved it.
The Logues performed a number of their own tracks and then made a host of other tracks their own. Most bands who do covers are trying to be the original band. The Logues are not. They are their very own selves creating their very own sound. I’m not an ABBA fan, and yet the lads had me singing and swaying to ABBA last night. I’m not a country fan, and yet they had me singing and swaying to country last night. I’m an avid Bryan Adams fan. No-one can cover him – I was wrong: The Logues did an awesome job. Johnny Cash, Status Quo, The Pogues, and so many more. But the song of the night had to be ‘The Sound of Silence.’ Simon and Garfunkle would be in awe. This was exceptional. The instruments, the vocals, the passion behind it, was truly spectacular. But this goes for all this bands music. It’s high energy and it’s passionate.
When the boys called a young lady up and sang Fairytale of New York, I just thought, ‘no way.’ This is a special song. Boy, did they nail it? The best performance next to MacColl and McGowan ever.
The Logues are a band that has a very big future ahead. These young men from that sleepy village are everything but sleepy. As they introduced Auld Lang Syne for a mock New Year’s Eve, I did shed a tear. I don’t want to say goodbye to this year, but they made me smile with that tear. It was so so apt.
As the night came to an end Logan McCool introduced the very last song saying: ‘when you’re feeling down, just think of this song and think of us.’ He had no idea the impact those words and indeed that song were to have on myself. The Logues burst into a wondrous version of ‘Always Look on the Bright Side of Life’, and I was blown away. Sadness pervades my world as this year comes to an end. As a very positive person, this ending last night helped me focus again on the bright side. Life is for living and I plan to live. The Logues you not only entertained in the best style possible last night, you provided therapy and instilled a concrete positive outlook in this gal as today brings the year to an end. A year that changed my life forever. Thank you guys for last night. We had a blast.