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UPDATED: Bell X1 come up trumps at secret HP show
Thirty lucky fans were treated to a special acoustic Bell X1 show in the intimate surroundings of Bewley's Cafe Theatre in Dublin on Sunday. **NOW UPDATED with photos!
The Hot Press Newsdesk, 24 Feb 2009
The Hot Press Secret Session, Bewley’s Cafe Theatre, Dublin
Gathered together in a quiet nook on Dublin’s Grafton Street last Sunday, thirty lucky Hot Press readers got a once in a lifetime opportunity, to attend an exclusive, intimate Bell X1 gig.
On a sunny Sunday afternoon, Bewley’s Café Theatre provided an ideal venue for the secret session. Heavy curtains, fairy lights and candles on the tables made for a clubby ambience. After pizzas washed down with bottles of Heineken, Bell X1, who were introduced as one of the most important Irish bands of the decade, took to the stage.
The setlist was chosen with the help of the audience, via a poll on hotpess.com.
The band strayed from it a little, but only to give an acoustic preview of tracks from the new album. Understandably, there were no complaints. From the old classics of ‘Rocky Took A Lover’ and ‘Eve, The Apple of My Eye’ to new tracks from the excellent Blue Lights On The Runway, Noonan was poised and passionate, expressive and enthralling.
His poetic lyrics dazzled even more than normal in the intimate setting, creating an interesting cocktail of soulful yearning, romance, and resignation, in the face of the bittersweet trials of life.
Mellow and heartfelt, Noonan sang like it was a spiritual experience, gesturing empathically with his hands, gazing into the distance and drumming quietly but theatrically with his foot.
The gentle and understated vocals, instrumentals and soft piano provided by David Geraghty and bassist Dominic Philips perfectly complemented Noonan’s subtle showmanship. Delivering a mix of well-known anthems and intriguing new songs, the gig flowed with ease, providing a snapshot of Bell X1’s past and a glimpse into their present.
Completely comfortable in an intimate setting, the band joked easily with the crowd. Noonan noted that it was the ten-year anniversary of the band, wondering if there was a metal to represent ten years of marriage. “We don’t do it for ourselves. We do it for you, the fans,” Noonan proclaimed.
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