Photo by Carlos Gutierrez
“When I’m great, I’m fucking great,” preached the always charismatic Lorde to a crowd of over 10,000 in Boston, Massachusetts on a rainy Tuesday night. Whether she’s playing her album for an intimate crowd of thirty next-level fans (exclusively covered by our Modern Girl Megan) or she’s performing for a nearly sold-out arena, Lorde is able to command an entire room while simultaneously making everyone feel like her close friend. Even while I admired her from the other side of the arena, I felt her energy right in front of me. This is the gift that Lorde presents through her music, her performances, and just simply her being: she finds a way to lock herself in your heart.
The show opened with the high-energy “Sober”, and as dancers filled the stage, a wave of screams welcomed Lorde herself from the shadows. Her powerful vocals felt so right — after a summer (and fall, and winter) of nonstop Melodrama I was ready to hear Lorde live, and she delivered with more emotion than I ever expected. Admittedly, I did not get fully into Lorde until Melodrama, but the deep cuts of “Tennis Court” and “400 Lux” were still crowd favorites. “The Louvre” was a cathartic moment in the set, and the moments of her being carried by the dancers left us breathless.
There was a certain level of intimacy as the dancers and the heavy set pieces disappeared, leaving Lorde center stage by herself. Her vulnerability to the crowd poured out when she talked about feeling like an outsider. This was my (and I think the entire crowd’s) breaking point — here was a 21-year-old pop star, selling out arenas around the world, openly discussing what every woman in her early 20s feels when it comes to heartbreak, friendships, and your own relationship with yourself. Lorde couldn’t even sing the first note of “Writer in the Dark” before my tears started falling, and it was because everyone can hear themselves in her music. You want to be jealous of her but you just can’t, because you know that her strength exists in you too. Her acoustic set featured a cover of Frank Ocean’s “Solo”, before ending with the other widely-relatable Melodrama track “Liability.” The entire arena sang along, “You’re a little much for me / You’re a liability”, with the feelings behind them felt all too well.
With all of the emotions poured out onto the floor, Lorde knew it was time to dance all over them. “Supercut” launched into the breakout hit “Royals”, which was unexpected but warm reminder of how far Lorde has come, and how we have all grown with her. “Green Light” brought the dance party to a close, with star-shaped confetti shooting out at the song’s climax. As a fellow water sign, I completely related to Lorde’s melodramatic Scorpio nature, but also the audience as a collective was able to celebrate the outpouring of emotions that we are so often told to stifle. This is Melodrama, and Lorde is giving us the power to celebrate Melodrama forever.