Seeing Lorde at Key Arena was TRANSCENDENT

Written by Ciara Loughnane & Cameron Payne 

Honestly, trying to find the words to describe the Melodrama tour is difficult. It was such a magical, out of body experience that I really don’t know what to say. Lorde was a lovely and genuine performer, and after the show my cheeks literally hurt because I had been smiling so much. Whenever she would talk to the audience, she kept just thanking everyone for coming out to the show. This is Lorde’s first U.S arena tour and she reminisced about how the last time she had been in Seattle she played at the Showbox. She talked about how special it had been that we had welcomed her into the city, and now only a few years later, there were thousands of us spending our evening with her. I felt as if it was almost like she didn’t realize how ridiculously talented she is and couldn’t fathom why so many people wanted to see her.

Hey! Head Arts Reporter Cameron Payne popping in to talk opener and Swedish queen, Tove Styrke! I had the pleasure of seeing her live after an incredible interview and her performance was everything I expected and more. She has the most fun, vivacious energy on stage that makes it impossible not to get up and dance; not to mention her incredible choreography and interaction with the crowd. She started with Borderline which was the perfect song to get the crowd hyped PLUS she was rocking neon pants and a white crop top, better than anyone I’d ever seen. One of my favorite parts of Tove Styrke’s set was her up-tempo cover of Liability. She mentioned this being her favorite Lorde song in her interview and seeing it come to life on stage gave me chills. She closed her set with Say My Name which is her most well known song and it showed. The crowd was singing along and i heard a girl next to me say “I literally can’t wait to follow her on Spotify”. To her fans and those that hadn’t heard Tove Styrke before this show, it was obvious she made an impression. My only complaint was that her set was too short and I can’t wait until she has a full concert because I’ll definitely be there.  Back to Ciara!

Both Photos by Courtney Pedroza

Lorde’s performance blew past any expectations I had set for the show. Every single song sounded even better live and Lorde’s vocals were amazing. She was able switch from this raspy almost yell (think how she sounds at the end of the bridge on “Supercut”) to the beautiful high notes on songs like “Lovelessness” at the drop of a hat. And she even did a cover of “Solo” by Frank Ocean. It was a cover that I didn’t know I needed until I heard it; it was honestly one of my favorite songs she performed that night, I felt like it was an unexpected pick for her, and she KILLED IT. I don’t think I realized how talented of a vocalist she is until I saw her live. Lorde packed every song with so much energy, she was constantly running across the stage, jumping around, and dancing! Oh my god, the dancing.

First, Lorde did do some of her signature (almost) limb-flailing style dancing during most of the songs, but on top of that, she had choreographed dances! With eight backup dancers, Lorde was there doing body rolls, being carried around the stage like the absolute queen she is, and just doing some synchronized walking that looked amazing. (Also, quick PSA, if you haven’t seen Lorde’s 2017 VMA performance where she lost her voice and opted to do a silent dance routine instead, please change that ASAP: see below) And even when Lorde herself wasn’t dancing, the backup dancers were killing the game.

The main set piece that the show had was a giant glass box that could either sink into the bottom of the stage, or be lifted about 15 feet into the air and tilted to either side. During a lot of the songs, the dancers would perform inside of the glass box and be lifted up into the air for the whole audience to see – they were honestly amazing. My favorite performance was during one of her songs (I wish I could remember which one) when a single female dancer was inside of the box and it was tilted to either side and she slid along the floor to either side in time with the music. It sounds super weird, but trust me, it was crazy amazing and that dancer must have insane leg muscles and balancing skills that I can only dream of possessing.

Overall, the show was absolutely beautiful. I had actually been dumped the evening before, so I went to the show by myself and it ended up being a really special experience. If you haven’t listened to Lorde’s album Melodrama, (first, what the hell? Go listen to it. And why are you reading this review? Second, after you listen to it, check out my review of the album here) it’s an album completely devoted to heartbreak and moving on so this show hit very close to the emotional state I was in. Standing in an arena full of people screaming lyrics that perfectly described the pain I was feeling right then and there; it’s something I can’t describe.

“Green Light” was the last song Lorde played before the encore, and right before she started to sing, Lorde asked everyone to think about someone who had hurt them or wronged them recently. She asked us to harness that negative energy, and to let it all out when we danced along to the song. And with confetti falling from the ceiling, surrounded by strangers who were also dancing their hearts out, I was able to let go of all of the negative energy I had been carrying around those last 24 hours, and see that green light.

CIARA LOUGHNANE | Honestly will never get over this show | KXSU Digital Media Director

CAMERON PAYNE | arts girl in a music world | KXSU Senior Arts Reporter

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