It’s a funny notion that as I grow older, I much prefer watching something loud and noisy than something more hushed and acoustic – you’d think it’d be the other way around. But tonight is an exception, mainly because I’ve spent my day seeing how long I can stay in bed for, so a bunch of acoustic acts seems like a great idea for such a hazy day.

First up is a Brooklyn based songwriter who is usually part of a full band project called Emanuel And The Fear, but today is playing on his todd by his full name Emauel Ayvas. The set begins in a hushed manor, with delicate guitar strokes and a frail yet beautiful vocal, as the set progresses Emanuel’s guitar playing gets harder and shows off his full vocal range along with impressive whistling in one track. A really gripping opener.Next up was supposed to be Tellison, one of the UK’s most underrated indie rock bands, but sadly their drummer can’t make the show so front man Stephen steps up to play solo. The set consists of beautifully stripped back renditions of songs from Tellison’s back catalogue, interspersed with a few new songs too, which all go down rather well due to Stephens lovely voice and his simple yet sharp lyrics. Another really engaging set.

Tonight’s headliner is another Brooklynite, the red-headed wonder that is Kevin Devine. This is the second of three trips that Kevin will be making to these shores this year and although I am particularly in awe when he has his backing band, ‘Goddamn Band’ with him, his acoustic performances are really quite something else. Kevin is probably one of the most charismatic performers I’ve ever seen, he plays his songs with the up-most conviction, rocking back and forth around the stage screaming off the mic on some of his more passionate numbers like ‘Cotton Crush’ and ‘Bubblegum’.

The dynamics of his performances are really quite breathtaking as he goes from toe tappingly upbeat, to pin-drop quiet; I look to see the whole crowd transfixed on him in these moments. He plays for well over an hour, delving into his extensive back catalogue and happily taking requests from the crowd, tracks like ‘I Could Be With Anyone’ and  ‘Longer That I’m Out Here’ are nice additions to the set in their perfect pop forms.

Kevin politely thanks his supporting cast for tonight’s show as well as the venue and the crowd, closing on a stunning version of ‘Brothers Blood’, an emotional song which sees crowd members closing eyes and submersing themselves in it’s powerful grasp. Kevin Devine has always struck me as a incredible talent and really captivating live act, but tonight’s performance really was next level and was nothing short of inspiring.

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Benjamin Forrester

I joined the Silent Radio family near the very start of my move to Manchester in 2012 and I'm still having the best time! During my stay here I've been in two noisy bands, had a not so noisy solo project, made a zine, started a blog and started a radio show. It's been productive to say the least and it's all been intersperse with a shit load of gig going and beer drinking. I would love it if you followed me on twitter @dr_brainless for excitable tweets about playing, watching and living new music.