Xavier Rudd and the United Nations Bring Their Global Sound to Cleveland

Concert Review


Xavier Rudd, already known for being a pretty cheery guy, looked happier than ever as he performed with his seven-piece band last night at Beachland Ballroom. Touring in support of Nanna, Rudd's first album as a bandleader, the group took a terrific crowd on an exciting romp through a lot of the new material.

A certain highlight came right from the liner notes of the album as the band played "Rusty Hammer" (stream the studio cut below), and then when right into "Rainbow Serpent" and "Creancient" — a dynamite trifecta on CD and a wellspring of energy onstage. Amid the transitions within and between songs, Rudd would introduce various members of the band and urge a solo or a new direction in the jam.

Ebbing from high-energy reggae dance frenzies to more drawn-out, delicate crooning, the band did a great job and keeping the setlist engaging all night. When he brought out his didgeridoo, the crowd went insane. 

Also noteworthy: The band's emotional cover of "Time After Time" was incredible.

(My girlfriend and I happened to get caught in the bar as the band transitioned into the encore. Rudd stayed onstage to play some solo stuff, and, barred from re-entry to the ballroom for a moment, we struck up conversation with the musicians before they ducked back onstage for the finale. The whole band just seems like a bunch of really terrific people.) 

It was great seeing Rudd again — and in a setting where he was able to expound on the sort of stuff he was playing last time he was in town

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at news@clevescene.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.