Concert Review: Troye Sivan - Auckland - Friday 13th September 2019

Troye Sivan | Photo Maisy Riera

Troye Sivan | Photo Maisy Riera

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE FULL TROYE SIVAN GALLERY BY MAISY RIERA HERE

By Saffy Wihiote

Artist: Troye Sivan

Date: Friday 13th September 2019

Venue:Spark Arena, Auckland

Troye Sivan, YouTuber turned pop star, played an iconic show at the Spark Arena, Friday night, touring with his Bloom album. He hit most big cities in the northern hemisphere and is now making his way through the south, opening his Australasian tour with New Zealand, saying that he loves Kiwi's; "the people, the fruit…"

The atmosphere in the air was palpable and Troye appeared energised by it. He asked for the stage lights to come up, to shine on the crowd so that he could get a good look at people's outfits. The theme for the night was blue, but I definitely missed the memo and dressed in all black. Around me were various shades of blue and variations of pride colours; adorning flower crowns, blankets, and leis. The fashion of the all ages crowd spanned the spectrum, from those dressed in a shirt and jeans to those wearing their fest best. There was no judgement here, one fan was covered in lights and transformed into a disco ball when the arena lights were low. The vibe was very accepting, and Troye was obsessed with the effort put in. The crowns were one of his favourites, making him laugh "pride flower crowns, I can't imagine a gayer thing." He promises a big reveal at the end and I cannot wait.

The set feels fast but dedicated, more timeless than quick. The lighting is constantly changing, mostly through pinks and oranges - the colour scheme for Bloom, blues, and pride.

Troye's band on the stage behind him are ordered in a straight line. The keyboardist and synth player do double duty as backup singers. Their voices are sweetly melodic, mixing perfectly with Troye's own dulcet tones. The drummer gets many spotlights. Literally. The stage lights strobe over him, flashing rainbow and changing colours as fast as he plays. The whole band is well on display and Troye praises them often.

Troye was a bubble of energy, bouncing and twirling around the stage. It is clear that he is a performer at heart; from childhood stage to YouTube, Troye is comfortable in front of a crowd. Between clusters of songs, he stops to chat, connecting deeply with his fans.

It's been three years since Troye was last here. A fact not researched but screamed out by someone in the audience. He plays a lot of the old, well-loved stuff, as well as the newer, grittier stuff. The difference between Blue Neighbourhood and Bloom is lived experienced. Troye cops to this, talking bluntly about the odd type of heartache experienced when you end the relationship and the toughness of coming out. Despite the raw vulnerability, Troye remained upbeat, dismissing his debuzz trains of thought with a laugh "I don't know why I’m treating this as a therapy session, I’m okay though."

Troye sounded pretty much exactly the same live as in his released tracks. Even hitting the debated line, "I Wanna Drown in your Hands," this remained as ambiguous as ever. His upbeat tracks give me 90s inspired vibes, while the grittier stuff gave me a Basement, mid-2000s feel.

"Do you want good news or bad news? Bad news, we only have one more song. Good news, I just lied." The insincerity of encores has always perplexed me. Why do we all participate in this charade? Troye feels similarly. He tells us that he will pointlessly go off stage, that we will yell and he will return like it was not scripted. After discussing the various roles we all play in the act, Troye stands up straight and takes the mic, "1 2 3 action, okay guys, last song…"

When Troye returned, he was a dazzling display of pink. Splendid, in a full-length, deeply plunging neckline, sparkly pink jumpsuit that caught the light and drew the eye. The voiceover intros were Bloom focused and as Troye strode into sight, the voiceover was overtaken by the sound of the heavy bass. Troye walked the stage like a pageant queen, holding a bouquet which he threw into the crowd stem by stem.

The encore was two songs long and the night wrapped up neatly. Troye had jokingly suggested an after party in town and people headed out in hopes that maybe… He flew out today; let's hope that it doesn't take him three years to hit our shores again.

Set list

Seventeen

Bloom

Plum

Heaven

Fools

Lucky Strike

Wild

I'm So Tired...

Postcard

The Good Side

What a Heavenly Way to Die

Bite

1999

Dance to This

Animal

Encore

Youth

My My My!