JACK GARRATT - WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 29, 2015
“It’s not a thing I’m going to get used to-me saying my name and people applauding” Jack Garratt said to the modest crowd assembled at DC9 Friday night. But if his powerful 45 minute set is any indication, this 23 year old singer/songwriter/producer will soon have no choice but to get comfortable with people applauding his name.
Garratt opened his set with “Water,” a song off his 2014 EP, Remnants. The crowd was initially slightly stiff—unsure of how to react to the one-man show taking place before their eyes. But the vibe quickly changed when Garratt launched into “Chemical” a track from his latest EP, Synthesia. When the chorus hit, Garratt immediately won over the crowd and people began to lose themselves in the layers of Garratt’s complex songs.
For his third song, the London singer slowed the energy level with “Old,” a new song. When introducing the song he told us “I don’t have an arrogant way of playing it yet…so I’ll play it on guitar.” The crowd, comprised mostly of individuals aged 18-30, politely swayed but the youngest attendee, a small child, danced.
Song four, “The Love You’re Given,” a genre-bending track off Synthesia, brought the energy level back up and showcased Garratt’s polished vocals. For song five, Garratt played “Surprise Yourself,” a stripped down song he often performs live but has not officially released. During his performance of this song, in which he only used his guitar, the crowd was so silently entranced by Garratt you could hear a pin drop.
Garratt closed the set with “Worry,” the artist’s most popular song and the one that demonstrated his ability to play guitar, sing, trigger drum samples, play keys simultaneously. Jaws throughout the venue were collectively dropped and heads shook in disbelief as Garratt effortlessly performed what looked impossible.
Perhaps what was most impressive about Jack Garratt was his ability to bring to life such intricately produced pieces of music with passion and sophistication and at the same time connect with the crowd on a personal level. His banter with the crowd throughout the set was charming and self-deprecating and by the close of the set you felt as though you’d watched a friend performing to a small group of people in his basement.
Garratt has just wrapped his brief US tour but has recently announced that he will be playing the legendary Glastonbury Festival in England this summer. He has also scored a slot opening slot for Mumford & Sons on a few of their Gentlemen Of The Road stopovers. View a full list of tour dates here and stay up to date with all things Jack Garratt at the links below.