General admission. Standing room only. A combination I do not look forward to in a concert. But if the artist and venue are right, I will endure. And Farrah and I did endure this combination, at The Fillmore, to see Lorde.
I was lucky enough to snag two tickets back when they went on sale a few months ago, before Royals was getting regular mainstream radio play. I don’t know if I’d be lucky to get tickets now seeing how big Lorde has become. Funny thing was when they went on sale, they seemingly sold out immediately. But I persisted for a few minutes and was able to grab two tickets.
We arrived a few minutes late to The Fillmore. Friday night traffic going up to San Francisco was ugly as usual. We caught a few songs from the opening act, Until the Ribbon Breaks. They sounded great on stage, so I immediately added a few tracks to a Spotify playlist. After their set people milled around, as usual, waiting for Lorde to take the stage.
The crowd started to fill up as Lorde’s set time was getting closer. The crowd was a good mix of ages, as The Fillmore can be depending on the performer. We were situated in a good spot, center and further back on the floor. Unfortunately, to Farrah’s left, a group of unruly 20-somethings decided to talk and bump around people through the whole performance. One couple just wanted to make out all night. In front of us was an older couple, probably in their early to mid 50’s. Made me wonder how many concerts do they attend?
Getting back to Lorde - she performed well for someone who hasn’t performed often on tour. She sounded well, though the bass was on the heavy side, making her voice sound muddled. From another review of the concert, it seems it was her idea to crank up the bass. She had energy, working the stage very easily. She talked between a few songs, using Thank you, San Francisco, often, which elicited approval from the crowd.
Her set was short, about 12 songs or so, lasting a little over an hour. No encore performed with the lights coming up after her last song. I thought she could have done a few more songs, as her album came out that day in some places.
The annoyances of the general admission crowd are worth it sometimes, especially when seeing an up-and-coming artist. It is always nice to see an artist on the rise, seeing them before they get too big, in an intimate place like The Fillmore.
Other reviews of the show are at SF Gate and San Jose Mercury News and SF Station.