Live Review: Frank Turner @ Slims

 Guest blog by Matt Leister

Frank Turner’s fourth and final California show of his Keep My Bones tour celebrated the man’s sheer musical talent, and even more unmistakably his genuine love for his fans. His energy was contagious as a sold out Slims joined in song after song, not missing a word as though the lyrics had been passed down to them through the generations.

It’s hard to mistake the influence that Turner’s roots have on his music, before his punk rock stint with Million Dead, back to his Winchester youth.  On the surface, it appears his energy might stem from experiences stage diving off amps. Listen closer and you learn that his passion runs with a deep reverence for the traditional stories and folk music of his home country. English history resonates through his sound and lyrics.

The crowd stood almost silent watching Turner belt out a bone shaking “English Curse”. When his band The Sleeping Souls blew up with “If I Ever Stray”, we were all ready to take an absolving head first dive into the English Channel. For a night, we were all sons and daughters of Winchester.

If you haven’t seen Frank Turner, see him, you won’t forget it. He’s a true optimist, playing music that will bring your spirits up while offering a healthy dose of reality. Agree or disagree with his lyrics, Frank’s a fan’s musician, never putting himself above his fans yet always mindful of his influence. After the show, we had the privilege of meeting Frank as he mingled amongst the lingering crowd. You could tell this was the good part, with a grin from ear to ear he gave the time to greet everyone that stumbled up to him. He was just getting over a heavy cold and even had to cancel a show in New Mexico the prior week, but he still found the energy to reach out after the long set.

The crew will be touring Canada, and will swing down the east coast, finishing up in Philadelphia on November 4 for their final North American gig of the tour. If you’re planning to be on the east coast in the next few weeks, here’s their upcoming schedule.

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