Chris Cresswell / Ian Graham - Live in Toronto (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Chris Cresswell / Ian Graham

Live in Toronto (2015)

live show

The last show of a tour is typically a big thing, and for Chris Cresswell, ending in his hometown of Toronto, things were no different.

Opener Chuck Coles started things off with an acoustic guitar backed with an upright bass (played by Arif Mirabdolbaghi), setting the mood for the night, which revolved around, of course, really great music. Highlights of his short and sweet set included “Sitting at the Bottom of a Well” and a lively cover of the Clash’s “Bankrobber."

Ian Graham of Cheap Girls (backed on electric guitar by Adam Aymor, also of Cheap Girls) was greeted by an enthusiastic audience. His set, too, was short… but it’s quality over quantity, and they didn’t disappoint in that regard. Everything they played was well received by the audience, the majority of whom didn’t need to be won over, evident in the singing along. “Her and Cigarettes” and “Ruby” were some of the highlights of the set.

By the time Chris Cresswell took the stage at midnight, the Silver Dollar was a little more crowded. The Flatliners’ enthusiastic frontman greeted the audience with the first track off of his solo album, “Meet Me in the Shade.” It being a hometown show, Cresswell’s mother was present in the audience, along with other friends and family... and it was a show that any mother would have been proud of. Cresswell’s performance gave no hint to the fact that it was the last show of a tour; he played and sang with contagious energy, nearly the whole room singing along with the acoustic version of “Daggers.”

Despite minor technical difficulties (which could be blamed on the thunder and lightning outside), Cresswell played an excellent set, doing the impossible and topping the acts that had come before. He ended the night off with an encore of requests, closing with an acoustic version of the Flatliners’ cover of Dillinger Four’s “Maximum Piss and Vinegar,” making it all the way through the song (in all appearances, flawlessly), despite warning the audience that it could certainly end in disaster.

The lineup worked perfectly, each act suited to one another with enough differences to prevent any redundancy or boredom. It was an intimate show, as shows at the Silver Dollar Room tend to be, given the narrow space, and every act played excellently, everything anyone could ask for from a mostly acoustic show.