OneRepublic at The Olympia Theatre – Review & Photos
OneRepublic at the Olympia Theatre – March 25th
OneRepublic’s supporting act Mikky Ekko really was a sight for sore eyes… and ears! The smooth and soulful singer/songwriter from Louisiana graced the stage with his powerful and hauntingly beautiful voice. The dashingly handsome 30 year old (who really looks like he’s in his early twenties) was dressed in a casual t-shirt and jeans putting on a stripped back and raw performance. Using a looper and microphone techniques he and his band wowed the audience. You will most likely have heard Mikky Ekko duetting on Rihanna’s monster hit ”Stay”, which he actually co-wrote with her. Hilariously enough, during his performance of the song he forgot to sing the second chorus and went into a completely different part of the song which led to a little awkward musical exchange between the members… but Mikky laughed it off and eventually they found each other again. I was quite disappointed that Mikky’s set was only 20 minutes long. His voice was addictive and I made a mental note in my head that the second I went home I would YouTube every song he has ever done.
A good 40 minutes later when OneRepublic came on, they began the show behind a white screen that covered the entirety of the stage. Behind the sheet we could see flashing lights which projected their moving shadows and instruments on the screen and this was quite effective for the first 30 seconds… but then it went on… and on… for a good 3 minutes. During this time the crowd lost its enthusiasm and started chatting among themselves, so unfortunately the ”dramatic opening” backfired a little as it was dragged out far too long.
On the 25th show of their tour (with an outrageous amount of shows ahead of them) you could tell that all those nights of singing were effecting Ryan Tedder’s voice… that being said, he put on a great show! Even though in parts when it was transparent his voice was strained and not at its best, he powered through not missing a note. His energetic and playful banter with the crowd highlighted just how good of a showman and performer he is.
During parts of the show the multi-instrumental band swapped their guitars for violins and cellos. These acoustic minimal performances of songs were my favorite, especially their rendition of the song that started it all for them, ”Apologize”, which they mixed with Macklemore’s ”Same Love”.
More upbeat performances like ”Counting Stars” and ”All The Right Moves” were made a little more special with my favorite feature of the set… an LED light-up piano, where Tedder showed off his exceptionally talented piano skills, which he does not utilize in every song, but when he does, boy is that man able to play! The other members of OneRepublic were very talented also… but there was a minor mishap during a guitar solo in which it came to light that (at least a section of ) the solo was prerecorded. From that moment on I was a little skeptical of the other members playing, and watched them (especially the cello player) very carefully… which took away the authentic feel from the performance.
With many more shows ahead of them I hope that Tedder gets the voice rest that he needs and does not permanently damage his voice, as the cracks are already starting to show. Although I wasn’t lucky enough to bump into Bono who was backstage at the gig on the night, but I did get a ”goodnight” from the famous Maureen Grant… Which was just as good, if not even better!
Review by Ruth McGovern
Photos from OneRepublic’s first show at The Olympia Theatre by Anamaria Meiu