As part of her “Talk of this Town” tour, Catherine McGrath presented her equivalently named album. I visited the tour on 22nd September 2018 in Liverpool, where the show was held in the smaller / upper floor room of the Arts Club called Loft.
Arts Club / Arts Club Loft – Venue Info
The Arts Club is located at the edge of the Ropewalks area, which is part of the Liverpool World Heritage site. The address is 90 Seel Street. In general, the area is very colorful, with a lot of arts, bars and clubs around. It belongs to a group of venues, the O2 Academies and has a bar / club area as well as The Loft, which has been used for the concert. There are multiple parking spaces around (which are comparably nicely priced – I paid 8 GBP for the whole day). It is an easy and short walk to the waterfront and city center attractions as well. It is also not too far away from the harbor area, where I had an average time at the Beatles Story.
The venue is quite nice. Despite being sold out, it did not feel too packed. There is a bar opposite to the stage. The sanitary facilities are comparably clean for a concert venue. I absolutely loved it and would recommend the venue.
In May 2019, I saw the CMT Next Women of Country in the smaller venue of the Arts Club, the so-called Theatre.
Catherine McGrath – The Artist
I wrote some bio on Catherine McGrath already when I reviewed her first (and recent) album, Talk of this Town. You also have a lot of video material in this posting, as she is quite active in social media.
Her fan base is steadily increasing in the UK. Her recent success is that she has been nominated as the (only) supporting act of Michael Bublé in the London O2 Arena the weekend after the Liverpool show. There seems to be a smaller European fanbase now as well, as a few people traveled in from outside the UK
The first support act giving a some twenty minute set was Mary McGrath, who is Catherine’s younger sister. The 17 year old, who did a solo performance, has a lot of potential and has a lovely voice and charming stage appearance. She started with some own songs before giving a potpourri of country and other popular songs in very individual versions. I absolutely loved that performance. You have to say, though, that you saw a certain lack of stage experience at her – for example, she was swaying all the time from the left to the right during performing. This looked a bit confusing after a couple of minutes already.
The second support act having a slightly longer set was Katee Kross, who was accompanied by two musicians on stage. Kattee is a country music singer from Glasgow. Her voice is very dominant and powerful. However, I did not like that in most of the songs, a pedal steel guitar part was replaced by an electric guitar – it just does not lead to the same lovely country music sound.
Catherine McGrath – Talk of this Town – the Show
Catherin McGrath’s set was about an hour. Thereby, she presented more or less the whole album, only Cinderella was surprisingly missing. The opener was Good Goodbyes, followed by The Edges and my favourite, Lost in the Middle. I named this song finally my favorite song of 2018. Catherine frequently changed between electric and acoustic guitar. One highlight of the show was Still the one, featuring Shania Twain, which she did as an acoustic version just togeher with Mary. This was the only cover of the show. Of course, Catherine McGrath also performed Wild, which has been quite successful in UK radio.
Meet and Greet
One of the amazing things Catherine McGrath is still keeping up is that there is a Meet & Greet after each concert, which is very popular amongst the fans, of course. Thereby, it is not a Meet & Greet like you might know it from US acts – Catherine still knows a lot of people. There may be a longer chat, multiple pictures, autographs. There were for example people from Spain and Italy, who roughly got five minutes of McGrath due to their long travel. For that show, of course, Mary joined and took pictures and chatted with the people as well. Even being in contact with some other artists personally, I feel that this kind of Meet & Greet is quite unique.
Catherine McGrath – Talk of This Town – My View
I might not be fully neutral about Catherine, as I fell in love to her music during the Country 2 Country Festival 2018 in London. The Liverpool show was great, she just has a natural touch to the people. The Meet & Greet thereafter is of course amazing.
To me, Catherine McGrath is currently the European country music act, which has the highest potential not just to make it big. Her music has a certain potential to grow the genre also in other parts of Europe, like Germany, where the market share is currently limited. It will be really interesting to follow her career in the next years. With her elder sister, there is also Mary McGrath who has a really nice potential to grow in the European country music scene.
The venue is also an absolute recommendation for smaller show like this concert. The people were very friendly, it is central, compact and close to transportation.
Link to Gallery
I put all pictures of the concert to a gallery on this website:
Some external Links
- Venue: Arts Club Liverpool
- Catherine McGrath: Homepage, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube
- Katee Kross: Homepage
- Mary McGrath: Twitter, Instagram, Youtube
Flyctory.com about Country Music
Here are all Country Music-related postings on Flyctory.com: