I’m not typically one for pop shows. I feel like they’re typically unoriginal and full of smoke and mirrors. If you asked me to classify Gayle into one genre, it would definitely be pop yet I was absolutely thrilled to be attending her show at Amsterdam Bar & Hall on Wednesday night. Why? Well, if you ask me, although a pop artist, GAYLE comes to a stage with an undeniable sense of passion and talent. Call me a hypocrite, that’s fine but Wednesday night’s set was a showing of the future of music and, as I have said with just a handful of other young artists, it gave me hope for the youth of today.
Before I dive into GAYLE’s set, let’s talk a bit about opening act Dylan’s set. Born Natasha Woods, Dylan is an English musician. She’s young and only at the start of her career in the music industry but there’s something here that is absolutely addicting and perfectly polished. Dylan’s sound was your typical pop vibe but with a bit of an edge to it. Every song came with either a sense of passion or a sense of attitude depending on the vibe of the given track.
Even though she only performed for thirty minutes, her set felt a bit like a rollercoaster ride with all of the styles and genres she fit into the wicked fast performance. Sure, it was pop but there were clear nods to classic rock in her guitar playing and, at times, her vocals. There were other moments where she had a very sensitive vibe to her performance reminding me a bit more of something like Adele. Finally, there were moments where I could hear a nod to acts like KT Tunstall in the music. It was raw and original but had infectious hooks and anthemic verses. The only commonality throughout her set was the flawless presentation of her infectious music.
Dylan will be back in town on April 9th with a performance slated at the 7th Street Entry. If you’re like me and crave a little pop music every once in awhile but want it to come with something a little extra, I highly urge you to check her out.
With only two acts on the bill, the show on Wednesday night moved fast but that’s okay with me. I was ridiculously ready to witness the magic that is GAYLE. I knew it was going to be magical because I had the opportunity to check her live last April when she stopped by The Fine Line. I had walked into that show expecting just another pop singer but was absolutely floored by what I got that night. Long story short, I was excited to witness and experience it all over again but would be lying if I said I wasn’t worried that GAYLE had fallen victim to complacency after hitting it big with her song “abcdefu”. Thankfully, it became clear within the first track of her twenty-one-song set that she has not changed and continues to only evolve as she continues on with her music career.
Kicking off with her catchy and slightly hilarious “indieedycool” song, I was instantly hooked. There’s just something so genuine about GAYLE that it’s impossible to not fall into her trap (for lack of a better term). From the second she and her two bandmates took the stage, you could just feel a sense of love radiate throughout the room. Although it wasn’t a sold-out room, it kind of felt like it just with the excitement in the air. At the same time, it felt like a super intimate show with the way that GAYLE somehow connected with every single person in the audience. Whether you were one of the birthday twins that got a performance of the Happy Birthday song from Gayle and her band followed by being gifted with a pick directly from GAYLE or you were one of those people standing further in the back trying to pretend like they weren’t super in love with the set, you felt connected to GAYLE in the perfect way.
Stylistically, GAYLE is another pop singer but that description doesn’t do her justice. Like Dylan, GAYLE’s sound comes with elements of everything from pop to rock to punk to folk wrapped up in her sound. There are even a couple of tracks where her voice seems to turn to something a bit more jazzy and sultry. Regardless of what style she was playing, there was something genuinely raw about each song that made her set absolutely addicting. She wasn’t trying to be a perfect pop-princess yet, at times, couldn’t help but come off that way just due to the perfection and clear practice she has put in over the years.
GAYLE’s set came complete with a couple of covers. Her cover of P!nk’s “Get the Party Started” was an obvious one as you can hear a clear P!nk influence through many of GAYLE’s original tracks but the jazzy spin she put on the cover kept it feeling fresh. What wasn’t an obvious choice was her super fun cover of “London Bridge” from Fergie. Honestly, I was a bit shocked that someone so young would pull this song out but it was absolutely perfect. Oh, and then there was “butterflies” which is GAYLE’s spin on “Butterfly” from Crazy Town which definitely was a throwback for me yet seemed to not be an obvious cover to some of the others in the audience.
I could clearly continue writing for hours about GAYLE’s set. It was dynamic, perfect, and fun while also feeling organic and free. The audience, like the styles in the music, was all over the place. You had super young kids who were probably at their first show ever and then you had adults that were there because they had been caught by GAYLE’s unique sound and clear talent. Regardless of what got you to Amsterdam Bar & Hall on Wednesday night, it’s safe to assume that you left the show feeling more than satisfied and already craving another performance from GAYLE.
Venue: Amsterdam Bar & Hall
Smell-O-Meter: The delicious food from Amsterdam
Average Age of the Crowd: 14 (But it was a super broad range)
Crowd Surfers- 0
Stage Divers- 0
Mosh-ability- 1 out of 10
Amount of Beer Spilled On Me While Walking Around- 0
Broken Bones- None Noticed
Spotted Flying Through The Air- Nothing
Fights- None Witnessed
Passed Out Kids- 0
Idiots Taken Out By Security – 0
How Irritated I Was With The Audience – 0 out of 10
How Many Times I’ve Seen These Bands Before (or at least how many times I can remember)-
GAYLE – 1
Celebrity Sightings – None
Overall Score –8.5 out of 10
Show on Deck — Lil Yachty / Nick Hakim
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