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Review: Danielle Bradbery & Midland at Omeara, London

The soon-to-be worst-kept-secrets in music... the Danielle Bradbery and Midland gig was the place to be.

Review: Danielle Bradbery & Midland at Omeara, London

Midland (l-r: Jess Carson, Mark Wystrach and Cameron Duddy)

James Gilmore

W!ZARD News Author

It’s Monday night and the 350-capacity Omeara music venue in London is packed to the brim.

You have no choice but to push and shove your way through the crowds to find a place to stand. It’s boiling. Guests are speaking so loudly you can’t hear your own conversation. What some guests don’t realise is that some of the most important executives in country music are at the back of the room – all ready to witness a moment that could be as momentous as one of The Beatles’ performances at Cavern Club in the 1960s.

Everybody is here to see two artists, both are about to be the worst-kept-secret in music.

As the lights dim for the first time, singer-songwriter Danielle Bradbery appears in blue lights alongside her acoustic guitarist. Opening with ‘Can’t Stay Mad’ from her 2017 release ‘I Don’t Believe We’ve Met’, it’s quite clear that the term “support act” is only vaguely relevant tonight. Everybody knows every word… if she had to win anybody over in the room; they were quickly won over in the opening moments by her friendly smile, honest lyrics and insanely impressive voice.

As we had been fortunate to witness multiple times over the weekend, at Country 2 Country Festival, Danielle Bradbery has a way of singing to an entire room of over 2,000 people and still make it feel like she is singing just to you. In a room for 350, it’s even more intimate.

As she moves through a set list which includes album tracks ‘What Are We Doing’ and ‘Hello Summer’ as well as her debut single ‘The Heart of Dixie’ it is in ‘Sway’ that Danielle, herself, realises just how much she has captivated the adoring crowd – during one rendition of the chorus, fans are singing so loudly that you can’t even hear Danielle sing.

Ending with ‘Worth It’, in six songs she had proven that she has everything it takes to be headlining a 20,000 capacity venue, and has left us with full hearts.

As the lights fade up and the room gets busier (if that’s even possible), the talk moves to the “headline” act (as if Danielle Bradbery didn’t steal the audience for herself already!).

Midland – the country trio made-up of Mark Wystrach, Cameron Duddy and Jess Carson – performed at the O2 Arena on Sunday night, supporting Little Big Town before they headlined Night 3 of C2C, a performance which – when we asked them about earlier in the day – nearly brought a tear to their eyes, and they describe during their set as the “best night of our lives”.

As the band hit the stage, the crowd roars in a way which makes the whole venue shake. Standing at the back of the venue, the excitement truly feels like we are about to see something super special… an “I was there” moment.

Opening with album tracks ‘Check Cashin’ Country’ and ‘This Old Heart’, taken from their debut album ‘On The Rocks’, the band waste no time showing their musical ability. Transitioning from song-to-song like a well-oiled machine. Their air kicks are somewhat choreographed, although their personalities still shine through with mayhem (most of which is unrepeatable!) in between the tracks.

Through hits including ‘Burn Out’ and ‘Make A Little’ there were moments when you were transported out of London, forgot all of your problems and were in Midland’s world. Everyone, from cowboy-hat wearing Dads to plaid-shirt donned teenage girls, was in on it. It was a party and we were invited! And we were apart of the big spectacle!

Whilst saving some of their biggest hits, including ‘Drinkin’ Problem’ (which currently boasts over 34M streams on Spotify) for later on in the set, this didn’t seem to matter – you didn’t have time to think about when your favourite song was going to be played, because your favourite band were playing… and even if you got dragged along and didn’t know them beforehand, they were your favourite band pretty quickly.

Without a doubt – on Monday night, the Danielle Bradbery and Midland gig was the place to be, and the phrase of “I’ve seen them live” is about to cause a lot of jealousy, for fans of both of the artists.

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