Written by Nadia Arandjelovic
Published on www.royalgazette.com
Honest and heartfelt: soul/folk trio Thirdstory
Thirdstory may not be a household name as yet, but they might well soon be. The talented soul/folk trio opened the Bermuda Festival of the Performing Arts this weekend. There were no fancy theatrics or light shows on stage on Saturday night — in fact there wasn’t even an opening act.
The focus from the time the show started to the moment it finished 90 minutes later was on the live instrumentals, beautiful vocals and honest, heartfelt lyrics.
Thirdstory is made up of powerhouse singers: Elliot Skinner, Richard Saunders and Bermuda’s own Ben Lusher. They performed before a packed house at the Fairmont Southampton.
It was hard to imagine the sensational group emerged from relative obscurity just over a year ago with their YouTube cover of Sam Smith’s I’m Not The Only One. Millions of views and thousands of Facebook fans later, they’ve performed throughout the US and the UK and are working on their first studio album. They sang that soulful Sam Smith cover song on Saturday and told the audience of how it “completely changed [their] life”. They also sang popular tunes by Drake (Hotline Bling), Taylor Swift (Style and Shake It Off), Tove Ali (Talking Body) and Jimmy Cliff (Many Rivers To Cross).
They made each song their own; what impressed me was their range and clarity. The cover songs were all wonderfully executed, but their original pieces were special. One of my favourites, Coming Round, told a story of unrequited love; On and On was another standout, a folksy ballad where each sweet note awakened the emotion behind the heartfelt words.
It came as no surprise to me when at the end of the night the crowd rose to their feet to show their appreciation and admiration for the group. It was all the proof I needed there should be lots more to come from the New York-based band with a strong Bermuda link.