Fans have wanted Sugarland to get back together for so long that they’d almost give up hope that it was going to happen. The duo decided to take a hiatus in 2012 and since then they’ve both been pursuing solo projects. Kristian Bush performed at the very first C2C: Country to Country back in 2013 and Jennifer Nettles performed a solo set at last year’s festival in support of her latest solo album Playing With Fire. It was with surprise, and a lot of delight, that Sugarland were a late addition to the C2C 2018 line-up after announcing they were reforming and releasing their new single Still the Same.
Following Kip Moore was always going to be a tough task but Sugarland brought something different to the C2C stage with their 70-minute set. Ahead of the show speculation was rife as to whether or not the duo would preview more new material but that didn’t turn out to be the case. Instead Sugarland celebrated their history by performing all of the hits fans would want to hear. All I Wanna Do and Stuck Like Glue proved to be infectious with Nettles’ vocals flawless, and her energy high. She worked on engaging the audience and building the atmosphere, which warmed everyone up nicely.
New single Still the Same fit into the setlist seamlessly. The song sounds like classic Sugarland but it has the feel of a contemporary hit that’s likely to shoot to the top of the charts, especially on radio. In the middle of the set Bush performed his solo single Trailer Hitch and Nettles followed with a stunning rendition of her solo track Unlove You. After nodding towards their respective solo efforts, Sugarland returned to their hits with performances of fan favourites such as Incredible Machine and Settlin’.
The highlight of the set for me was an acoustic version of Stay. The song was an goosebumps moment and it showcased the duo at their best. Debut single Baby Girl was a hit with the audience and to end the set, Nettles took to the keys as the duo performed a cover of Simple Minds’ Alive and Kicking.
Sugarland definitely put on a good show and it was a nice way to reintroduce themselves to the C2C audience. A US tour follows later this year and I’ve no doubt they’ll be adding a few stops in the UK. With boundless energy and an infectious joy that radiated off the stage, Sugarland delivered the goods and set the foundations for a very successful return to the charts.
Set list: 1. Find the Beat Again 2. All I Wanna Do 3. Stuck Like Glue 4. Want To 5. Already Gone 6. Still the Same 7. Alright Again 8. Trailer Hitch (Kristian Bush) 9. Unlove You (Jennifer Nettles) 10. Incredible Machine 11. Settlin’ 12. It Happens 13. Stay 14. Baby Girl 15. Something More 16. Alive and Kicking Performance date: 10th March 2018