Review + Photos: Half Moon Run @ Vega – Copenhagen

Half Moon Run made sure to bring their haunting vocals and immersive rhythms with them from the Canadian Mount Royal area as they performed in Copenhagen, Denmark, leaving the audience dreaming for the night. AMBY were there to take in all the delicate details and have tried to sum up what became one of the most epic concerts evenings.

Half Moon Run was about to get on stage to a completely packed venue with the audience standing closely side by side at Vega in Copenhagen. I managed to move my way up to the front and was allowed to be squeezed in among the audience there for photos on the first couple of songs, leaving me at one corner of the venue and with just enough space to keep my hands up with the camera. Definitely a challenge to capture the concert eve like this, but it’s always cozy to be part of the crowd. The mood was great and curious chats went on as the production team brought in equipment on stage before the show started.

I was personally wondering whether Half Moon Run would have a wicked mannequin hand on one of their mic stands like I noticed at one of their shows three years ago, and I admit that a spark of nostalgic vibes appeared to me as I watched the production team bring in that fine piece of mannequin hand. For me it has become a symbol of Half Moon Run to take on a stage and it just belongs there with them. People around me had noticed as well, and phones went up to capture further photos of the well known figure.

As the clock turned to 10pm, the band literally jumped their way up on the stage and they kept that good energy going throughout the concert. Devon Portielje and Conner Molander in the front of the stage seemed to be having a good time rocking along to the music when cutting loose from the mic stands for a short time – swinging the guitars carelessly around the area, shaking the long hair up and down, and moving around with spontaneous jumps. Never serving a dull moment, but just adding an extra level to the sound and entertainment, then both Dylan Phillips and Isaac Symonds would from time to time hit their two sets of drums simultaneously and let the songs carry on with immersive rhythms, having Dylan hitting the drums so passionately that the kit almost tipped over. The band generally handled both multi-instrumental play and diverse sound with an impressive ease. The sound would vary effortlessly from the calm folk, some surf influences, to country vibes before adding these intense blues parts or hard rock riffs and then go aside and make a smooth passage to the more electronic.

When the members got back to their mics, they would go on with eyes closed and seemed to be all engrossed by the moment. It is always a joy to listen up for Devon’s glass-like vocals that can hit the notes crystal clear while making an easy transition between fine built songs and make a rough cut through the room. Isaac Symonds hiding behind his instruments in the back of the stage also proved his sweet vocal abilities that evening as he toke the lead for one of the songs. When the whole band joined in for some four piece harmonies it was spot on delicate, soulful and spacious. Almost ghost-like light choirs, that would haunt your mind and soul. The audience joined in for a more massive choir as the well known tracks “She Wants To Know”, “Call Me In The Afternoon” and “Full Circle” appeared, which marks the perfect live touch to these songs from the first album “Dark Eyes”. Still, it was the songs “Turn Your Love”, “I Can’t Figure What Is Going On”, and “Narrow Margins” from the latest album “Sun Leads Me On” that stuck with me a little longer for such delicious vocals and airy play.

The audience around me cried out for the band to return on stage just as wild as vikings that evening. Stomping on the floor, shouting out, and whistling like no other. The band made a fine return on stage, not once, but twice, to please the crowd with a bit more. I guess I am not the only one who appreciated this concert, went home haunted by Half Moon Run’s beautiful music and would dread a three years wait to hear it live again.


For all features and interviews with Half Moon Run, click here.

Review and Photos by Jules Faurschou | @rockonpoets

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