Live Review: Grian Chatten // Night and Day, Manchester

Grian Chatten brings his solo record to Manchester’s iconic Night and Day, in partnership with Piccadilly Records.

The legendary Northern Quarter venue is packed out early, with eager fans queuing around the block for a glimpse at the Fontaines D.C. frontman – armed with vinyl LPs and CDs for signing, the eager crowd are seated, filling Night and Day with ease.

Before long Chatten takes to the stage – he strides on as casually as you like, sunglasses on indoors and a pint of Guinness in hand, before perching on a stool centre-stage, accompanied by an acoustic setup. Grian’s day-job as frontman of Fontaines D.C usually sees the Irishman in constant motion, striding up and down the stage and fidgeting endlessly. This time around, Chatten’s hands are occupied throughout – either he’s strumming the acoustic or gripping his pint, occasionally stopping to thank the audience for coming out.

He opens the show with ‘Salt Throwers off a Truck’, a Pogues-inspired number, with Chatten singing so softly – he sounds phenomenal too, having clearly warmed into the live shows for his debut solo record, Chatten embodies Lou Reed with immense levels of cool and clear musical talent in abundance. ‘All of The People’ and ‘The Score’ follow, before Chatten initiates some audience interaction during ‘Fairlies’, encouraging the crowd to pipe up during the chorus. Manchester takes heed of the call, and belts out the singalong chorus, during what is unquestionably the most “sing-along” moment on the record.

A further highlight is a version of Fontaines’ ‘The Couple Across The Way’, a cut that perfectly embodies themes of love, loss and hurt that occupy much of Chaos for the Fly. Chatten is on electric form, and seems to lose himself in the music before snapping out of it once the crowd bursts into rapturous applause. Chatten closes with album closer ‘Season for Pain’, which is vulnerable, emotional and ruthlessly raw and painful. Watching Chatten like this is an ethereal experience: it’s like watching him perform the demos for the record, and the intimacy of the entire experience suits Chaos down to the ground.

photo credit: Eimear Lynch

Author avatar
Charlie Brock

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