After rising to the top of the charts last year with his single ‘Human’, Rory Graham, better known as Rag’n’Bone Man, performed at Manchester Academy on Saturday.
A roar could be heard rippling throughout the audience as Graham walked onto the stage. Covered in tattoos and wearing a red checkered shirt he looked like an ordinary guy. However, as he began singing it was clear why he was awarded British Breakthrough Act at the 2017 Brit Awards, as everyone stopped to listen it was like he had put them under a spell.
After beginning his set alone on the stage, the cloth behind him fell to the floor revealing the band. This added an upbeat vibe to the songs and brought a variety of sounds to the music.
The singer presented a great stage presence and wasn’t shy with the audience, talking after most songs. He was very welcoming to the crowd with his Southern accent, bellowing “Manchester are we good”.
As “The Fire” was performed flame themed red and yellow lights flashed violently in time with the music. The simple yet fitting set worked well as it did not take away from Grahams powerful voice.
Throughout the show he performed a range of his older songs and recent songs such as his well-known track “Human”, reaching out to the wide variety of his fans in the audience. One of the most popular songs of the night was his single “Skin”. The track demonstrated that his voice is just as incredible live as it is recorded. With the crowd singing the lyrics “It was almost love, almost love” back to him, he could be seen smiling uncontrollably at the audience revealing his down to earth personality. His appreciation for his fans was displayed when he explained that the audience were making him blush by them prolonging their cheers once the song had finished.
The audience were in a trace whilst he sang his sad yet meaningful songs. One of which was the powerful song “Life in her yet”, which soon had the audience tearing up after finding out the inspiration was his grandma.
The band was used in a clever way with each member having a solo at some point in a song. His last song “Hell Yeah” featured the bassist performing an outstanding solo showing off jazz like sounds.
Graham’s voice is certainly worth listening to live and will have you feeling emotions which not many artists can achieve, especially live when you are immersed in a crowd. Over summer he will continue his tour and will also he will be performing at a range of festivals including Live at Leeds and Radio 1’s Big Weekend. So he is not one to miss!