Evening Hymns - Pivo Pivo, Glasgow, 21st May 2013 2

Evening Hymns – Pivo Pivo, Glasgow, 21st May 2013

The basement bar that is Glasgow’s Pivo Pivo was surprisingly quiet for this show. The sunshine and weeknight gig had kept the sun starved Glaswegian masses away. Nonetheless, Canada’s Evening Hymns were incredibly thankful to the people that had turned out, and gave a heartfelt and incredibly engaging show which felt all the more intimate for it.

Knowing that Evening Hymns is essentially the one man band of Jonas Bonnetta, I was unsure which version we would witness and was happy to see another two musicians tune up before the show.


After a short delay with the sound, they kicked off with recent album opener Arrows. Instead of the drone keyboard intro, the song was stripped back to acoustic guitar (Jonas), electric guitar (drummer Jon) and female backing vocals. To say this was a tight performance would be understating it. They went straight in to Family Tree after Jonas traded his acoustic for a silver, sparkly electric guitar. After an excellent version of older track Dead Deer we were treated to a ‘brand new’ track titled Evil Forces. This was just one of a couple of new tracks they unveiled on the night from an album they say will be recorded when they return from touring. From the sounds of them it’s likely to be a more uptempo, heavier sounding album than Spectral Dusk something akin to maybe Sparrow and the Workshops recent material.

Jonas’ between songs chat is good which really helps the crowd feel connected to the band. They hinted they were feeling a little tour weary at this point, adding how many changes you go through saying ‘thank you’ across Europe and how easy it is to make mistakes with language.

Next was older track Mtn. Song which gave way to a fairly heartbreaking chat from Jonas about his dad and how he had been sick for a long time with a rare disease before his death. He admitted to being a ‘little bit jealous’ of his brother and dads relationship as his dad was a trucker and he was ‘the vegetarian musician’. When he did start to play You and Jake it was difficult not to feel emotional and there were a few bowed heads around the room.

Asleep in the Pews continued the sombre tone. Bonnetta has a way with words that allows him to take the crowd wherever he wants and from the downbeat section he manages to quickly lift the mood with some chat about how Jon (drummer) is ‘sick’ and that girls love that chat as well as some entertaining musings about his beard and someone in Oxford having their wonderful beard photographed for a magazine beside him in a pub putting his to shame.

The set ends with Cabin in the Burn. With its rousing drum intro and gloriously uplifting chorus it’s a fitting ending to what was an excellent live performance.

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