Kick starting the weekend in style
Morning Runner took to the stage in the late afternoon sunshine, but due to the late start of Guilfest on Friday, although they were scheduled to play at around 5 PM, they were still only the second act to appear on the Main Stage. This meant that they didn't pull in quite the crowd a band that has been showing such promise might have hoped for. That said in set closer 'Burning Benches' we saw the weekend's first real example of the festival crowd pleaser, with the song coming at the end of an impressive performance.
They played through most of recent album 'Wilderness is Paradise Now', with opening track 'It's Not Like Everyone's Your Friend', recent single 'The Great Escape' and the brilliant 'Punching Walls' amongst the best received. The latter's feel good summer sound was absolutely perfect for the hot weekend Guilfest was blessed with.
One of the most interesting tracks in this set was always going to be next single 'Oceans'. The one criticism I have of Morning Runner, and I'm not alone with this given the recent single review on Room Thirteen, is that when he tries to do the soft and emotional stuff, Matthew Greener's vocals are fairly weak. I was interested to see how this translates to the live arena and on Friday's showing he is a more powerful singer for the emotional touch than I gave him credit for, although that doesn't change how the record sounds of course.
Morning Runner were definitely a highlight from this festival, and are well worth a look if they're passing through one near you soon.