Whispers And Roars Like An Orchestra

Last weekend I just went on a 4-day trip to Malaysia. It was partly a holiday because I didn’t get to travel this summer, but the main reason was to see a Snow Patrol show (hence the post title, which is a line from their song Heal Me.) Now, if you’ve been reading the blog for a while, you know that they are my favorite band ever, so when I found out they were doing an acoustic tour in SE Asia – Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Singapore – I jumped at it.

Me, basically

After some consideration, I settled on Malaysia. I’ve never been there before, so it would be nice to combine the show with some traveling. My plane landed in Kuala Lumpur early in the afternoon – the show was at 8, and I figured I would have plenty of time to settle in. However, between waiting in the longest line ever at immigration, navigating two trains, and my exquisite sense of direction, I didn’t get to the hotel until 5. Luckily, the venue is literally next door, so after checking in and a quick wash, I popped over. The venue looked so unassuming that I wasn’t even sure it was the right place, but as soon as I arrived, I heard the sound of Run floating down – they were doing sound check – and my heart skipped a beat. There were a few people in line already, so I decided to just grab a quick bite and queue up. The line wasn’t too long, certainly nowhere as ridiculous as when I went to see them in LA (though that line was mostly Ed Sheeran fans) but I didn’t want to take any chances.

The outside of the venue

After 2 hours of waiting, we were let in and the place soon filled up. Then it was more waiting, first for the opening act, Ryan McMullan (who was filling in on piano for an injured Johnny McDaid), and then for Gary and Nathan to join him. Still, Ryan McMullan was good, and I had fun chatting with some people in the front row and we got a kick out of watching the roadies setting up – they were all big guys, yet they had to stand on tiptoes to check Gary’s mic because he is so tall.

Finally, it was time for Snow Patrol. And though it wasn’t my first SP concert, it still felt like the first, so amazing it was. No, “amazing” wasn’t the right word. It was magical. I read in an article or an interview that Gary has this ability to make a stadium feel intimate and a small venue feel like a stadium, and it was absolutely true in this case. Though I missed the rest of the band, their absence didn’t affect the show in any way. And all this when Gary had a throat and chest infection. Despite his voice cracking a few times, he said he didn’t want to cancel the show and soldiered on.

And that’s what made everything so special. The music is great, but it was Gary’s charms and his bantering with the crowd and the rest of the band that brought a fun, unique touch to the show (there was a moment when they were tuning up and Gary asked Nathan “Are you all right there, sweetheart?” that melted all our hearts.)

My crappy phone photos couldn’t do the show justice, so here are a couple of videos – we were quite happy to sing along and give Gary’s voice a rest 🙂

And here’s What If This Is All The Love You Ever Get for the encore, because Gary is adorable in it:

As it turned out, they did have to cancel the last two shows in Indonesia and Singapore. I was so glad that I decided on Malaysia and felt incredibly lucky that I got to see them. Hopefully I will get to see another show with the entire band one of these days (and it won’t take another seven freaking years.) Thank you, Snow Patrol, and get better soon, Gary!

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