Vance Joy Graces Fans with Live Songs from the Sydney Opera House
Vance Joy Live At The Sydney Opera House includes electrifying new renditions of his beloved tracks, recorded in November of last year during the Australian leg of Joy’s sold-out In Our Own Sweet Time World Tour.
When I play at a truly beautiful and iconic venue, I hope that some of the magic of the place will rub off on me and bring out my best. My band and I saw these Sydney Opera House forecourt shows coming a long way out. We were primed and excited— adrenaline spiking as we took to the stage…
– Vance Joy
“Missing Piece” starts the album off with a strong and steady rhythm. The guitar, along with the strings and drums, gives off a folksy and down-to-earth sound. Vance Joy works off the accompaniment, singing about a loved one he always thinks of and misses.
The singer then transitions into “Mess is Mine,” another heavily acoustic piece, but with a more varying melody and plucking sound. Throughout the song, fans can be heard, playing the role of the backing vocals. Singing along, fans shout the chorus, all with deep emotion and heavy guitar. For the rest of the song, Vance Joy takes over, becoming more expressive with the lyrics.
Approaching the golden hour, “Like Gold” starts low and slow. As the song carries a note up and down a scale, Joy keeps things soulful and simple, sometimes belting a powerful note.
“Every Side of You” contains a simple guitar accompaniment, one that has a playful melody on its own. Between breaths and verses, Vance Joy interweaves his vocals to complete a brighter song.
“Wasted Time” shifts into a more mellow mood. The singing carries lots of emotion, conveying the genuine wondering of why someone would stay. As it continues, the song’s rhythm picks up and tackles those heavy questions.
Now introducing a new song, “Don’t Fade” begins with Vance Joy’s humming. The sound fills in spaces between the verses— a nice touch. The slower pace of the music almost parallels the drawing out of a memory or moment with a loved one. It’s as if he’s reminiscing and doesn’t want it to end.
“We’re Going Home” includes many references to light and shine. In an honest and intimate way, the singer almost confesses in the song how a person can feel like home. Starting with the chorus and throughout the verse, Joy conveys a sense of hope and assurance.
The beat kicks off right away with “Clarity.” Then, with the entrance of a backing chorus, the song creates the perfect combination of folk and pop. As the title suggests, the structure and sound remind listeners of those special moments when things just make sense.
For “Saturday Sun,” Vance Joy urges fans to sing along. Not only do they do so without hesitation, they nearly shout. The song swaps out the guitar for the ukulele, a clean and soft sound that creates a cheery feeling. The lighter melody can’t help but remind the audience of bright skies and warm weather.
“I’m With You” is another fan favorite. A perfect slow dance type of song, the tune was further stripped down at the opera house, and that much more emotional.
“Looking at Me Like That” is one of Vance Joy’s songs where lyricism pulls through. The minimal accompaniment and emotion in his voice work together so well, conveying the weight of his words.
Fans couldn’t help but sing along as “Fire and the Flood” came on next. The swaying strum of the guitar picks up and it all becomes incapable of being contained, be it the feeling, the rhythm or the singing. All of it comes together to express that swept-up feeling of encountering someone is alluring yet dangerous.
“Catalonia” is ever so slightly reminiscent of “Riptide” (spoiler alert: it’s up on the setlist). The tune evokes the image of the ocean and wind in all its freshness. At the same time, Vance Joy manages to keep it upbeat and warm with his singing.
Vance Joy takes his time singing “Georgia,” using every lyric to describe this figure and how she makes him feel. Fans can also be heard shouting along with him, naturally thinking about their loved ones too.
And I, I never understood what was at stake
I never thought your love was worth its wait
Well now you’ve come and gone
I finally worked it out
I worked it out
“Riptide” doesn’t need much of an introduction. As soon as the ukulele came on, fans screamed and instantly sang along. Listeners can hear the excitement in the live version and will feel themselves also swinging along.
The album closes with “Lay It On Me.” A love song, without a doubt, perhaps the singer-songwriter is making reference to his relationship with his fans, an acknowledgment of the support he’s received. After all, the song talks about knowing everything and anything about someone, yet promising to love one another nonetheless.
Joy recently unveiled the final leg of his epic In Our Own Sweet Time Tour, performing from August to the end of September. For fans unable to make it out to the venues, give his discography a listen on Spotify and feel a part of the experience.