Photo credit: chuff media
After a short stint around the UK, Palace are ending their tour with a headline show at the Roundhouse in Camden. The London-based three-piece start their set with a few classics from their debut album, So Long Forever, released in 2016. Reaching out to the packed-out crowd from the outset, front man Leo Wyndham encourages the crowd to sing along.
Wyndham sets the mood for the night by really emoting every word he sings and telling the crowd that this show is very special for them. Their not-quite-tight performance is exactly what makes this band so good live. Although a little messy, you can feel the energy in each of their songs. The band play tunes from not only their most recent album, Life After—which hit the charts earlier this year—but also earlier hits like Settle Down from the 2015 EP Chasing The Light. It’s evident from the fact that the crowd know all the words to this one that Palace have had a strong fanbase since day one.
Wyndham makes sure to interact with the crowd throughout the set. When it's explained how the band have all dreamed of playing this venue for a long time, the crowd cheer so much that all you can hear for a good minute is the roar of their unyielding support. Wyndham continues: “we started in St Pancras Church to about 50 people”, and man have they come a long way since then! They get back into the music with two crowd favourites, Holy Smoke and Live Well, for which the crowd does most of the singing.
The band introduce their “strings crew” to accompany them for some of their slower songs, which brings a quiet lull over the audience as they listen, in awe of the melancholic sounds streaming from the speakers. For me, the peak of the night begins with Wyndham’s introduction to Heaven Up There, one of their most recent singles off the new album; it is an honest depiction of the struggles of losing a loved one. “This song is for anybody who’s ever lost anybody they’ve loved,” Wyndham says. The unity and support felt throughout the venue at this point is almost indescribable. The crowd, hands high in the air, sing the chorus “is it heaven up there” with as much emotion as Wyndham himself. A truly special moment to witness.
After a very aptly timed walk-off, the band come back for two more songs. After playing Veins—their first single release where it arguably all started for this band back in 2014—Wyndham then takes a moment to thank the crowd, saying “this is it… we can’t thank you enough, it’s been an incredible few years, and there’s so much more to come… this one’s for you guys.” Going out with a bang, Bitter is their closing tune, and they give it their all.
Currently on tour in America, Palace are sure to be back with more new material soon. And with the promise of “more to come,” I’m sure I’m not the only one looking forward to seeing what Palace do next.
Edited by Alexia McDonald, Head Digital Editor