By: Leah Ching, Staff Writer
Love is louder, than all this noise
If there’s somewhere that will make a person think of every love they’ve ever had and lost, it’s at a Craig Cardiff concert. On Friday night, Juno nominated Canadian singer and songwriter, Craig Cardiff, visited Thunder Bay for an evening song writing workshop and concert, filling The Study with both old fans and new. Our own local coffee shop was the venue, and the anticipating listeners filled the room and transformed it from a regular studying and chatting venue to a cozy concert house filled with eager fans, waiting for the story filled performer to begin strumming his guitar.
After waiting in line with patrons to grab a drink, the award-winning musician took to the stage in a very humble manner for a haunting performance that transformed The Study into something far removed from what was typically expected from somewhere like The Study; he made the space entirely his own.
With his guitar and smooth voice, Craig Cardiff was able to turn the study from a coffee shop into a cozy and intimate little affair for attendees. Cardiff’s performance used live digital loops, and his lyrics exposed honesty in song writing that was not only refreshing but also absolutely moving. The room was silent as Cardiff performed, singing songs about love and heartbreak that struck a chord for many attendees.
Cardiff played both old and new songs in his set, and passed around a “book of truths” during his show, asking fans to share something they regretted inside, and the confessions were admittedly sometimes sad to read through. A way of connecting with listeners, Cardiff’s performance was full of interactions. At one point throughout the evening, he stopped to ask a couple sitting in the front how they’d met, and how long they’d been together, prodding stories out of them and getting laughs out of the audience all around.
Other highlights of the evening included Cardiff inviting two attendees onstage to accompany his song performance with interpretive dance, which made the crowd laugh wildly at every of their dance moves. Cardiff also invited the crowd to sing along and harmonize with many of the choruses, adding to the intimate atmosphere of his concert experience.
Two students spoke with the Argus about Cardiff’s show. “His songs are really ones you can get lost in, they really hit home. His lyrics are beautiful, and if you’ve ever been in love you absolutely feel every word he sings,” said Dakota, who mentions that she sees Cardiff every time he comes into Thunder Bay. Rachel added, “it’s really a cult following that comes to the shows, and I love that about it. But at the same time, Craig Cardiff is absolutely underrated.” Drawing comparisons to Bon Iver, Damien Rice, and City and Colour, the girls admitted that Cardiff is definitely in their favourite artists list, but also tops that list because of how accessible his shows are, and how relatable and real he is. “He keeps his relationship with his fans very personal,” something that Dakota said “is missing in the industry today.”