Sons of the East, playing their first sold-out London gig and their first London gig since 2019, were at the O2 Academy in Islington on 6th September – the last UK date on their European tour.
Support was in the form of Australian singer-songwriter Kim Churchill. Kim played a eight-song set – including seven self-penned and a cover of Led Zeppelin’s Lemon Song. His originals were preceded by background on the songs, and included Rosemary, about his Grandma; Don’t Leave Your Life Too Long, about how he has dealt with periods of depression; and Please Come Home – his next single.
Kim, performing barefoot and with acoustic guitar, harmonica and a foot-controlled drum, entertained the audience. His music was well written and performed, and although his vocals were not always clear (an issue with the mix rather than clarity of voice) the set was a good introduction to the artist.
A good fit with the Sons of the East, Kim Churchill is worth checking out if you like them. His new album is due out in January and he will be back in London to play Omeara in April.
Sons of the East, an Australian trio consisting of Nic Johnson, Dan Wallage and Jack Rollins, were welcomed to the stage by an excited audience, and started their set with one of their earliest releases, California. Following this up with other early songs – The Farmer and Come Away – the crowd was clearly full of many fans who were happy to see the boys back in London.
As the show continued, the band added in tracks from their new record – Palomar Parade, released 23rd September – and singing duties switched between Jack Rollins (also on acoustic guitar) and Nic Johnson (playing keyboards).
The show was very entertaining. Jack is a true showman, engaging the crowd throughout with his between-song talk, and delighting them even more when he joined them on the floor to sing You Might Think. With Dan switching between banjo and electric guitar, Jack playing acoustic where needed, and the addition of bass and drums, the songs sounded great. The three-way harmonies on some of them gave added depth, along with the change of tempo throughout the set.
Sons of the East put on a great show, even for those who were not previously aware of their music. If you like the mix of country, folk, pop and an indie vibe to your music they are worth checking out, and if you get a chance to see them live, get a ticket – it will be worth it.
Sons of the East are currently continuing their European tour before heading to North America. Their debut album Palomar Parade is out 23rd September.
What I Do
It Must Be Luck
You Might Think
On My Way
Into The Sun
Silver Lining (with Kim Churchill)