This past Saturday, Columbus’ Schottenstein Center was nearly sold out as pop and indie music fans gathered for the Melodrama World Tour.
New Zealand native, Ella Marija Lani Yelich-O’Connor, better known as Lorde, is currently on tour promoting her second album. After a four year hiatus, “Melodrama” was released last year in 2017 following her first album, “Pure Heroine.” “Melodrama” is said to be an emotional and personal album comprised of 12 songs, many related to the singer’s heartbreak and soul-searching throughout the past couple of years.
Lorde opened up the show by addressing a rumor she had heard, that if she says “OH,” that everyone would say, “IO.” This rumor was subsequently confirmed as she yelled, “OH,” only to hear a booming “IO,” followed by giggles and laughter on her part. Throughout the performance, she also asked how much of the audience “went to the college,” meaning Ohio State University, or were in fraternities and sororities, as she proclaimed she was fascinated with college, having never been herself. Lorde’s commentary between songs made for a more personal and genuine performance, in my opinion.
In addition to Lorde’s songs and commentary, her performance was accompanied by intricate lighting and visuals. Lorde’s stage was backed by huge digital displays of videos and images, along with a clear, hanging box in which she and dancers would enter. Throughout the show, this box would raise and lower above the stage, fill with smoke and have various lighting elements. While there were no obscure decorations, the lighting and dancers played a main role in the experience, with Lorde dancing along for much of the show as well.
Lorde opened the show with “Sober,” an energetic, upbeat song released on her latest album. Followed by a mixture of songs from both albums: “Perfect Places,” “Supercut,” “Hard Feelings,” “Liability,” “Writer in the Dark,” “Homemade Dynamite,” “Tennis Court,” “Buzzcut Season,” “Team” and of course, “Royals” – arguably her most famous song.
With a great mixture of new and old songs, I have to say my personal favorite is perhaps Lorde’s most vulnerable. Sharing a moment with the audience, Lorde sat to sing “Writer in the Dark.” She also disclosed how she wrote this song during the loneliest time in her life. Lorde said she is still in shock that, “all the way in Columbus, Ohio and that my mom didn’t bribe all of you to come; that you’re here on Saturday night because you want to hangout with me and sing along.”
Following the personal moment, Lorde asked if the audience knows Frank Ocean, a popular R&B artist and one of her favorites. The singer proceeded to sing a cover of Ocean’s song, “Solo,” which was well perceived by the crowd.
Perhaps the most memorable part of the show was the last song she sang, “Green Light.” She requested a need for the entire arena’s emotions for it to work; she said she needed all of our “happiness, sadness, jealousy, angst, pettiness,” and to sing along. As Lorde completed her last song by running and jumping on stage, the song ended with star-shaped confetti filling the stadium as green lights strobed and beamed through the crowds.
If you have yet to see Lorde live, I highly recommend the experience for any visual or music-art lovers. At the very least, I encourage you all to listen to “Melodrama” if you wish to feel inspired, comforted or simply need some good vibes – oh Lorde, you won’t regret it.