Words by: Tyson Clarke

Photography by: Jerome Joyce

On Wednesday September 19, 2018 Frank Turner brought the first of his 3 sold out shows to Toronto’s Phoenix Concert Theatre. The tour is in support of his new record, Be More Kind. It was a beautiful fall evening that saw hundreds of fans of all ages pack into a small, sweaty room. Sounds like the perfect setting for a punk rock show. Bad Cop/Bad Cop, and Toronto’s own Sam Coffey and the Iron Lungs kicked off the night before the English Punk Rocker hit the stage.

Frank Turner started off his set with the surprisingly mellow and heartfelt “Be More Kind” off of the new album, before picking up the pace with “1933”, and “Get Better”. “What a joy! What a pleasure it is to be here. I know I say that every night but I really mean it. Thank you for coming. Night 1 of 3! Raise your hands if it’s your first time coming to one of my shows. I know it’s a punk rock show so there shouldn’t be any rules but we have 2 simple rules. First, don’t be a dickhead. The second, if you know the words, sing along. If you don’t know the words, dance” Turner said, before jumping into “Recovery”.

He flew through his 23 song set, giving the crowd a career spanning performance which included all of the fan favourites, as well as a few deep cuts for the hardcore fans. The fast paced punk rock anthems meshed perfectly with his slower, more folk sounding songs.

“It’s a Wednesday night in Toronto, and you know what that means. It means we’re gonna go to The Horseshoe Tavern after this and get fucked up. That’s been the story of my life one too many times” Turner said before playing a three song solo set which included “The Real Damage”, “Least of All Young Caroline”, and “The Way I Tend to Be”. After that the rest of the band returned and they wrapped up their set with “Blackout”, “Out of Breath”, and “Photosynthesis”.

Shortly after departing the stage, Frank Turner came back on to thank the crowd one last time. “I’m the luckiest person in the fucking world. Because my favourite thing in the world is to gather a bunch of people in a dark room and lose our minds to rock and roll. And I get to do that every day. Toronto used to be a vacation destination for me, and now I sold out 3 nights in a row here. So thank you from the bottom of my heart” Turner said before playing “Get it Right” and “I Still Believe”.

During the song “Four Simple Words”, Turner jumped in the crowd twice. The first time to crowd surf. The second time, during the break down of the song, he got the crowd to make a circle so he could slow dance and serenade a lucky woman in the audience. The set was closed off with “Polaroid Picture”.

As if 23 songs during close to a 2 hour set wasn’t enough, Frank Turner left the crowd wanting more. Luckily for fans in Toronto, he has 2 more shows to go. If Frank Turner comes to a city near you, listen to these “four simple words” and make sure you’re there!

Frank Turner Setlist:

  1. Be More Kind
  2. 1933
  3. Get Better
  4. Recovery
  5. Little Changes
  6. The Next Storm
  7. Brave Face
  8. Losing Days
  9. Glorious You
  10. There She Is
  11. If Ever I Stray
  12. Try This At Home
  13. I Am Disappeared
  14. The Real Damage (acoustic)
  15. Least of All Young Caroline (acoustic)
  16. The Way I Tend to Be (acoustic)
  17. Blackout
  18. Out of Breath
  19. Photosynthesis


  1. Get it Right
  2. I Still Believe
  3. Four Simple Words
  4. Polaroid Picture

Bad Cop / Bad Cop

Sam Coffey and the Iron Lungs

Frank Turner

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