George Ezra is a name you probably hadn’t heard of around the start of this year. Having become something of a radio darling over the summer, and with a relentless schedule of gigging, touring and numerous festival appearances under his belt, it’s unlikely George Ezra is a stranger to your ears any longer.
Making a quick stop off in his hometown of Bristol on this most recent tour, the venue was packed from wall to wall and the atmosphere excitable. The set opened with the upbeat single Cassy O’ and prompted rapturous cheers. Intentions were clear: we were in for a good time. The groove continued with summery album track Drawing Board, and the band seemed to be having a rather enjoyable time. The endless touring must be paying off as the performance was slick and expertly executed.
Mid-way through the 40 minute set George excused his band for solo renditions of EP track Benjamin Twine and the utterly gorgeous album favourite Leaving It Up To You. Before launching into the latter we were asked to ‘bear with’ Mr Ezra, as he was lacking in any choral support. But with the husky and passionate deliverance of that love number it was all pleasure and no chore, and there was no bearing with to be done.
The latter half of the gig saw a distinct shift towards a more downbeat, contemplative atmosphere with George interacting lots with the audience and seeming genuinely appreciative of their support. Of course no good gig is complete without an encore, and Ezra certainly didn’t disappoint. The gig closed with performances of Cyndi Lauper’s Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, as covered recently on Radio 1’s Live Lounge, and the stadium-sized Did You Hear The Rain? Aye, that we did George. But with that performance, the rain on this blustery Tuesday evening seemed a little bit further away.