Tom Grennan may not be a household name as of yet, though he is hotly tipped by many to be one of the sounds of 2017 and on this performance, this burgeoning reputation is not at all surprising. Grennan was warmly welcomed by the sold out 100 capacity basement of Head of Steam and confidently swaggered around the stage, made a few opening remarks regarding his outfit (a full tracksuit that made it unclear as to whether he was in Newcastle to play a show or to go to an away day) and stunned the audience with a powerful, resonating note to open with ‘Old Songs’. From here it was fairly clear what was to come.
“hotly tipped by many to be one of the sounds of 2017”
Grennan was then joined by his band and continued his set with as of yet unreleased tracks ‘Barbed Wire Fence’ and ‘Give It All’, centred around his acoustic guitar line and impressively soulful voice. His light, playful discourse between songs kept the small crowd onside, but it was with ‘Sweet Hallelujah’ that the set came to life. This track really showcased Grennan’s vocal ability and was raucously sung back to him by his fans. Newly released ‘Praying’ was equally well received and catchy enough for people to pick it up during the song.
“genuinely humbled that he was being heard on the other side of the country”
Grennan saved his two best known songs until the last such as his collaboration with Chase & Status, ‘All Goes Wrong’, which with all credit to Grennan was every bit as dynamic and engaging in this reduced format. Claiming that he was not “one of these artists who will wait for everyone to call his name for an encore”, he closed his set with ‘Something in the Water’, which really lent itself to the upbeat singalong feel into which the crowd obligingly converted it.
As he left the stage, Grennan thanked everyone for coming out, and seemed genuinely humbled that he was being heard on the other side of the country. He proceeded to join the stragglers for a few drinks and was warmly congratulated on all fronts. It is clear that on this form Tom Grennan has a very big year ahead, and I, along with the other 99 people in Think Tank? Underground, eagerly await the release of his album later this year.