An act that never disappoints is the best way to describe Will Varley, in the last year I have had the pleasure of seeing him on numerous occasions but last night was truly special. The venue, the Komedia is magical itself the evening took place in the basement in a cabaret esque set up. At first glance I was dubious, it’s not a venue I’d of usually placed him in but with the accompaniment of the supporting 7 piece band it fitted perfectly.
The support act Cocos Lovers provided a tranquil soul soothing performance, their sound combines folk and roots which provides for a easy listening. Will described the Kent based ensemble as dear friends of his and it set the tone for a night full of powerful lyrics and smooth tunes.
In light of recent political uncertainty and changes in the UK and beyond Varley adapted his lyrics to fit a new audience and time. A large issue at concerts recently has been audiences spending less time engaging and more time recording the gig on their phones to brag about on social media or enjoy later; however Varley put on a show that was very much for in the moment and few phones were in sight.
The tour comes just after the release of his new album, ‘Kings Down, Sundown’. The first track of the album ‘To Build A Wall’ is of strong political importance, even more so after President Elect Trump’s rise to power, speaking of how we cannot let political unrest divide us. However not one to solely dwell Will breaks the set up with cat humour and joking about budget hotel chains.
‘When She Wakes up’ talks about Varley’s friends daughter and what she’ll experience and was written after watching her nap with strangers fighting in the street outside.
In no uncertain terms with Bob Dylan esque guitar and a powerful message and husky vocal Varley is set to be one of the defining players in folk for this generation. I highly recommend seeing Will live, you can see him in London at the Shepherd’s Bush Empire.
You can purchase tickets here.
Fun fact: Will Varley walked over 130 miles with a tent and guitar on his back, from London Bridge to Deal, Kent where he resides.