On October 28th, British folk-punk extraordinaires Frank Turner and The Sleeping Souls invaded House of Blues Dallas. Though technically touring for his 6th studio album, “Positive Songs for Negative People” released in August, he played songs that spanned his entire catalog. I was slightly disappointed by the turn out of the crowd, but Frank obviously was not, delivering an impassioned, and might I say lengthy performance, that somehow still left us all wanting for more.
Frank Turner gained some popularity in the US off of his single, “Recovery” from the album, “Tape Deck Heart.” A rocking, drug-centric post-breakup song, “Recovery” personally struck me, and caused me to invest in his entire catalog. Without knowing much about him, I couldn’t help but hear a closeted punk rocker, hidden in denim folk wool. Sometimes you could hear it in the music, but mostly it was his attitude, and ideas that made me feel this way. This feeling I had culminated when I found out that NOFX had covered his song, “Glory Hallelujah” on tour, and had called it their, “favorite song of the whole year.” At one point Frank was even invited on stage with punk rock royalty NOFX, belting out the chorus, “There is no god! No heaven, and no hell!” So with that being said, I was not quite sure what to expect out of a Frank Turner concert.
The crowd spanned ages and creeds. I met a wonderful middle-aged couple named Chip & Sherry who were waiting on the couches upstairs for the show to begin. They understood why I wanted to talk to them, “because we’re old?” (Their words not mine.) Chip said that their daughter had turned them on to Frank, and that they have been hooked ever since. I also got a chance to talk to some military veterans, punks, and just your average hipsters, who were all gathered there to see Turner. The crowd was not huge, but the people that were there, were all huge fans, singing along with every song. Frank came out in a black skinny tie, white plaid rolled up collared shirt, black jeans and a white leather belt, oh, and of course an acoustic guitar. He mentioned that he was going to be playing some old songs, new songs, and songs from the middle.
Frank Turner and The Sleeping Souls went on to play, by my count, roughly 2324 songs, with an additional 3 song encore, ending in, “Recovery.” He built the anticipation for the hit song the entire concert, and just blew everyone’s minds by the end of it. I think that I can speak for everyone there by saying that at the end, we were all pretty spent, but if Frank had wanted to do another set, I don’t think that anyone would have left. So my first time seeing Frank Turner in concert was amazing. I’m putting him on my “can’t miss list” of bands to see when they come through my hometown of Kansas City. His tour now is officially over, but I’m sure with his affinity for, “The Road” that he will be playing a venue near you very soon.
Written by Cameron Batschke