C2C REVIEW: Sugarland – Saturday 10th March 2018, The O2

Credit: Anthony Mooney

The best weekend of the year otherwise known as Country 2 Country Festival is now over for another year and we all have our own highlights and drunken memories. Without going too much into the latter, one of my personal highlights, was the reunited form of award winning duo Sugarland.

A spectrum of colour and fun as Sugarland took to the stage Saturday evening alongside Luke Combs, Kip Moore and headliner Kacey Musgraves. Showcasing their still ever strong chemistry, impeccable performance skills and such loved songs it probably resulted in most of the audience proceeding to tears at some point during their set… no, i’m not pointing at me!!!

After 5 years apart pursuing their music on separate ventures, I can’t help but think this was the best thing Sugarland could have ever done. You could genuinely see the passion they felt sharing the company of one another amongst the 20,000 adoring fans filling out the o2 arena. Jennifer’s performance was nothing short of outstanding, it was as if her body was taken over by some sort of animalistic character, so effortlessly she danced around the stage and not at any point did she seem as if she was lacking physical energy. Same goes for her powerhouse vocal, Nettles could put the likes of Celine Dion and Mariah up to quite a challenge, but something that makes Nettles even more special than the previously noted women, is the country twang she nests so delicately amongst her honey-like voice.

 

On the other hand Mr Kristian Bush had the audience in the palm of his hand with the huge array of instruments he showcased with such a professional manner. You can tell by the way he plays, he is an absolute master of his craft. His close-knit harmony to Jennifer’s lead is what creates that distinctive ‘Sugarland Sound’. The smiles shared between the pair were the kind that as the audience, you don’t want to miss; I for one was completely captivated by the infectious joy they exuded.

Amongst a set list of dearly beloved hits there were a few ‘pinch me’ moments including an emotional acoustic performance of ‘Stay’. Personal stand out moments for me were ‘Baby Girl’ and ‘Still the Same’ which, with a back drop of videos from Sugarland’s early days, became one of the poignant emotional points in their set. There was a moment during ‘Baby Girl’ (which was the band’s first single back in 2004) where I had a proper ‘omg, I am watching Sugarland right now’ moment and I can guarantee I wouldn’t have been the only one.

With a late announcement to the bill, the excitement for Sugarland was through the roof. The success I think they are going to achieve in 2018 is going to be unimaginable. They are on the road to becoming true legends. I just hope the UK can be a part of that success with them.

Shannon Hynes
@s_hynesmusic

Set List:

1. Find the Beat Again
2. All I Wanna Do
3. Stuck Like Glue
4. Want To
5. Already Gone
6. Still the Same
7. Alright Again
8. Trailer Hitch (Kristian Bush)
9. Unlove You (Jennifer Nettles)
10. Incredible Machine
11. Settlin’
12. It Happens
13. Stay
14. Baby Girl
15. Something More
16. Alive and Kicking