Vance Joy | Ascend Amphitheater | Nashville, TN

Written by Kayla Albee | Photos by Nick Zimmer

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Vance Joy

Venue: Ascend Amphitheater

City: Nashville, TN

Date: May 10, 2018

Ascend Amphitheater, Nashville's go-to spring and summer concert spot, is perfect for a relaxing night of fresh air, live music, and a beautiful view. Behind the stage, you can catch a glimpse of Nashville's modest skyline. In the opposite direction, you have the glowing lights of the Pedestrian Bridge, a place where many gather to watch concerts from afar for free. Vance Joy performed at Ascend on May 10 with direct support from the up and coming group Lovelytheband while on his Nation of Two World Tour. 

Lovelytheband started playing while the sun was still shining and the venue was continuing to fill up with fans. Their opening song, "Make You Feel Pretty," had an early 90's dream pop vibe to it which was perfect as this show seemed to signify that warmer weather was finally upon us.

They performed their latest single, "These Are My Friends," which was set to drop at midnight along with "Broken" which expresses the idea that it's okay to not be okay, which is a message that many other artists have been vocalizing lately.

It appears that things are moving quickly for Lovelytheband, as they've been on tour with Vance Joy and have been gaining momentum with their new material. Towards the end of the set, vocalist Mitchy Collins announced that his pedal board wasn't functioning properly, prompting the bands tour manager, Topher, to take the stage. It turns out that the pedal board wasn't broken at all, and it was all a ruse to get the crowd to join the band in singing "Happy Birthday" to Topher. According to Collins, the group wouldn't be where they are today if it wasn't for his hard work. 

By the time that Vance Joy took the stage, armed with an acoustic guitar, the sun had set and the stage lights were shining. Appearing as a silhouette among the bright lights and shadows on stage, Vance Joy began his performance with "Call If You Need Me" off of his latest release, Nation of Two.

A seemingly natural born story teller, he spoke about the backstory behind his songs, which added more depth to the lyrics and showed the sentimental value that he finds in all of life's experiences.

He explained that his song "Like Gold" is about seeing the good in a relationship that has ended, and the ability to focus on the memories that have been made rather than dwelling on negativity, and shared with the audience that his mother helped finalize lyrics on the song "Alone With Me." 

His set list included a groovy mash up cover of Lionel Richie's hit "All Night Long" and Justin Bieber's "Sorry" which turned the venue into one big dance party. 

Closing the show with "Saturday Sun," Joy was joined by his band to take a bow before leaving the stage. With a superb vocal range (can we talk about that falsetto?) and a strong backing band (the horns in "Fire and the Flood" really brought the song together) this show ended up being everything that fans would want, and then some. 

You can view the upcoming dates for this world tour here