Gig Review: Ron Pope @ Whelans

Ron Pope is a musician with a cult following, so it would be only rational for his recent Dublin gig to be an intimate gathering of die-hard fans.Whelans on Wexford Street has a stage which has been dominated by some huge acts, such as Jeff Buckley and Glen Hansard, and the whole venue evokes a 'lighters in the air' sort of feel. Well, if we were still allowed do that of course.Opening for Pope were Alexz Johnson and Wakey!Wakey!, and the two even performed a song together before spending the remainder of the gig in the crowd among fans. This gesture truly exemplified the laid back atmosphere of the gig.Pope took to the stage shortly after, kicking things off with his uptempo new single 'Lick My Wounds'. The setlist that followed was a mix of old and new material, with perhaps just too slight a focus on Pope's month old album Calling Off The Dogs.Pope and his three piece band returned to the stage for an encore performance of some older hits, and the crowd were more than happy to join in.Transitioning between various guitars and a piano, Pope displayed himself as a triple threat of singer, songwriter, and musician, and finished up with his immensely popular internet hit 'A Drop In The Ocean'; although the fans did most of the singing.