Written By | Ariana Simon
Billy Raffoul made his next to last stop in Atlanta on November 20th, performing on his first headlining tour since his debut release, “Driver”. The 22-year old singer-songwriter from Ontario made for a cozy setting in one of The Masquerade’s smaller rooms, Purgatory, gathering an intimate crowd comprised of long-time fans and admirers.
Many of the younger attendees crowded the front of the stage, eagerly awaiting Raffoul’s appearance in barely hushed tones, and seemed surprised when lights came up for an opener instead. Led by singer/guitarist Jered Robert, groovy Atlanta natives Youngest quickly reeled in the unsuspecting crowd with their beach-esque melodies and catchy lyrics. Their set included a near nostalgic full band cover of Mac Demarco’s “Viceroy”, complete with a kitschy chord progression and dreamy vocals.The band’s debut single titled “Anything For You”, provided a perfect closer to their set, with the crowd now singing and dancing along as if they were all old friends.
After a short intermission, Billy Raffoul came onto the stage, solo, with an array of various delays, compressors, loopers and drum pad pedals laid out before him. He happily greeted the audience, thanking them for attending his first headlining tour and immediately dove into his set, gently strumming into songs like “Forever”, that were soon accompanied by the echoing voices of his fans. With his equipment, Raffoul’s guitar sounds filled the room as completely as a full band, breathing new life into his intimate set.
His songs are multi-faceted, with lovestruck vocal lines backed by guitar work that could only be described as masterful; Raffoul’s performance contained many notable elements that quickly draws you into the music. Even as a new fan, I found myself easily mouthing along to the refrain in the solemn track “Nobody’s Here”. As if his looks weren’t enough, Raffoul’s wistful melodies proved to be just as beautiful and entrancing, leaving an enraptured audience eagerly awaiting his next tour.