Half Moon Run Stuns Paradiso, Amsterdam

Half Moon Run performing at Paradiso in Amsterdam on 11/13/2019. Photo © Sylvia Wijnands

Amsterdam, The Netherlands – With their third newly released album, A Blemish In The Great Light, Canadian indie rock band Half Moon Run played at a sold-out Paradiso. Because this show sold out so quick a second date the next day was added. Even long before the doors opened a row began to form outside in the rain, which shows the popularity of the band.

Accompanying Half Moon Run was Canadian indie-folk singer-songwriter Leif Vollebekk. Switching between an electric piano and guitars, he played a beautifully intimate show. Looking around, it was clear that he already had fans here in The Netherlands! He wasn’t able to bring his drum computer, so he asked the crowd to help him out by snapping their fingers. His fourth and latest album New Ways was released just a few weeks ago on November 1st. All in all, a pleasant way to start the evening.


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Then, it was time for Half Moon Run. The show starts with “21 Gun Salute”, a song from their debut album, Dark Eyes. The deep base of the song shook the room and everyone in it was awake. The stage lit up with a wall of beautiful LED lights that covered the back and sides. The band is known for their heavy use of percussions and playing multiple instruments when playing live sets. The stage was filled with two big drums sets. As if that wasn’t enough drums for a four-piece band, lead singer and guitarist Devon Portielje had another smaller set of percussion next to him.

Throughout the night, they switched from a bit more heavier rock songs like “Turn Your Love”, “Drug You” and “She Wants To Know”, to the more folk songs like “Call Me In The Afternoon” and “Unofferable” with ease. Another great example of this is their new song “Razorblade”, which has both of these worlds combined. It starts with a nice and easy-going melody then ends with heavy guitars. But don’t be fooled, the lyrics of this song are not as light as the melody might make you think, talking about immigrant looking for a better future and not finding it.

Halfway through the show, the band gathered around one single microphone to play “Sun Leads Me On”, which created a nice, intimate moment. Of course, new songs were played as well, like their latest single “Favourite Boy” and “Then Again”. Most songs they played were from their debut album. Not that it mattered to the crowd, everyone was dancing and singing.  Every song was welcomed with loud cheering.

After coming back for their encore, the show wrapped up with the band’s biggest single, “Full Circle”, which is sung back by everyone without exception. After the band left the stage, the audience continued to clap for so long that eventually the band came back up. They treated the crowd with one more bonus song, “Fire Escape”, before leaving the stage again. This time the show really ended, leaving behind a feeling of euphoria after a fantastic night!

HALF MOON RUN Photo Gallery

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21 Gun Salute
I Can’t Figure Out What’s Going On
Then Again
Turn Your Love
Favourite Boy
Narrow Margins
Flesh & Blood
Sun Leads Me On
Need It
Call Me In The Afternoon
Drug You
She Wants To Know
Consider Yourself

Jello On My Mind
Hands In The Garden
Full Circle

Fire Escape

Show Date: 11/13/2019