Hunter Hayes is one of the youngest and most talented artists in country music at the moment but both his music and live performances seem to divide the country music scene here in the UK. Having played an electrifying set last time he was at C2C, I was very excited to see him again. Unfortunately for Hunter, this year he had taken quite ill and had quite a bad throat which saw him cancel most of his press duties to rest his vocals. It was due to his illness which played a massive part in the audience’s divided opinion on his set.
With a full band, from the start the sound wasn’t quite there and the band drowned out a lot of Hunter’s singing. Starting with One Shot it was pretty hard to hear him and the same said for Yesterday’s Song and Light Me Up. The energy was on fire and Hunter gave it all he had but sound, which is not his fault can really ruin a set if not done properly. Heartbreak and Somebody’s Heartbreak were better and Hunter is truly a showman and even more so when his health is on top form. Hunter kindly made room on his set for Irish Country sensational Catherine McGrath for her single Don’t Let Me Forget which Hunter collaborated with her on. Catherine’s mic sadly didn’t work at the very start but when it did, the pair did a great job and I know a proud Adam Hambrick who co -wrote the song with Catherine was very proud in the O2 audience.
The sound improved as did Hunters voice for Amazing Grace/Dear God and even better so for Wanted, Tattoo and Storm Warning. The set ended rather abruptly as Hunter had run over time and wasn’t able to perform his last song which was a shame as was very likely to be I Want Crazy. Hunter did apologise and promise us he will come back as he owes us a song.
I do hope he does return and that he will get an opportunity to prove to any doubters that he is actually a very skilled musician and wonderful live talent. It is such a shame he was so ill and he did look like he was struggling with the pain.
Overall, I enjoyed myself, I love Hunter and think he always puts on such a great show, ill or not.