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Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, April 27, 2012 - Volume 40 Issue 17
Last Call: Snow Patrol completes third week of British invasion
Arts & Entertainment
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Last Call: Snow Patrol completes third week of British invasion

by Albert Rodriguez - SGN A&E Writer

First came Radiohead. Then it was Coldplay. Now it's Snow Patrol.

The upcoming swing-through by Grammy-nominated band Snow Patrol on May 1 will complete a third consecutive week that Seattle has hosted one of England's finest. The group, who found an American audience with 2004's Final Straw (Mercury Music Prize nominee), is huge overseas, capable of filling sports arenas from Europe to Asia and getting top billing at some of the biggest summer festivals (V Festival, T in the Park, etc.), not to mention opening for U2 in soccer stadiums when they have a spare moment.

'Run', a rock ballad that sounds as gorgeous as it does downcast, catapulted Snow Patrol to indie fame, but only to be outdone years later by 'Chasing Cars', thanks in part to its inclusion on a Grey's Anatomy episode. Fast forward to 2011. The five-piece unit released their sixth album late last year, Fallen Empires, which produced two hit singles, 'Called Out in the Dark' and 'This Isn't Everything You Are'. 'In the End', the fourth released track ('New York' was the third), is climbing the charts back home at the moment.

Consistently great songs has kept Snow Patrol afloat. It doesn't really matter what everyone else is doing, they've stuck to a formula of writing solid lyrics and pairing them with musical backdrops that range from melodramatic to spirited. Sometimes you wanna listen to them when you've just broken up with your boyfriend, and other times you wanna play them on the way to a football game.

In attracting a universal audience (they played Dubai in February), the band - lead singer/guitarist Gary Lightbody, guitarist Nathan Connolly, bassist Paul Wilson (aka 'Pablo'), drummer Jonny Quinn, keyboardist/electric whiz Tom Simpson - is no stranger to Gay music fans. While they haven't reached out broadly to non-hetero media, or lent themselves to Gay social causes (e.g. AIDS awareness campaigns), a la Coldplay or U2, they do seem open to a diverse following that goes beyond your run-of-the-mill indie dude. From the times I've met Snow Patrol, once even in their dressing room, they haven't appeared uncomfortable in knowing that some Gay men love their music, and maybe a little more - those aren't just feminine shouts aimed at Lightbody to 'take it off'! Lightbody, by the way, interviewed with Seattle Gay News a few years ago, and also wittily compared the quintet to the Village People in another interview, saying they were 'only slightly less Gay'.

The Paramount Theatre show will likely feature a half-dozen new songs, but I'm guessing older favorites are on the set list, too. 'Run', 'Chasing Cars' and 'Called Out in the Dark' are definitely in, though on the bubble are 'Shut Your Eyes', 'Spitting Games', and 'Just Say Yes'. An opening act hasn't officially been announced, but newcomer Ed Sheeran has been traveling with Snow Patrol since the US tour launch last month in Orlando. Doors open at 7pm. Visit www.stgpresents.org for more information.

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