Although I don’t know Charli XCX all that well, I still knew to anticipate the most from this particular artist. She has a very large presence no matter where she is. I’ve seen videos and heard stories of her performances, so the build-up for this show was well brought. And I found myself amazed throughout the whole thing.
To begin the night, an incredible singer known as Allie X presented herself on stage, and performed a track familiar to everyone in the venue, “BITCH.” The crowd seemed to be fans of hers, singing along to her lyrics and mimicking her ragdoll like dances.
Her dancing matched perfectly with the eerie hues of purple, blue and red lighting. Her flowy white dress took in the colour nicely, which added on to her extremely visually enticing movements.
She took a moment to thank everyone present for supporting her and reassured that she would be at her own merch booth, signing whatever anyone bought.
She had one of the best live vocals I’ve ever heard. Allie had such a unique high pitched voice and used it to her advantage. You’d expect her voice to be affected by her harsh thrashing and headbanging, but it was unwavering as if she’d been standing still in front of a microphone stand. Allie X did such an amazing job as the opener, I can only imagine how interesting her specific style would be at her own show.
Time passes, and the crowd gets to see the stage come together. A massive cube was unveiled, a soft glow of light spilling from its core. They tested a few lights, got the crowd riled up while they were at it, and the show was finally ready to begin.
A monologue type recording started up. It was Charli XCX, thanking everyone for coming to the show, saying “I better hear you fucking scream when I get on that stage.” She continues on and thanks the artists featuring on her new record, “Charli.”
Suddenly, her silhouette appears, and Charli starts the night off with the first track off her record called “Next Level Charli”, a catchy tune that brought everyone dancing. She continued on with other tracks that hyped up all of the audience, such as “Click” and “Vroom Vroom.” Corona was booming with music and screams.
“Bon soir Montreal!” Charli greets to the venue, earning a hearty greeting right back from the crowd. “Your city is so stylish and filled with beautiful people. Thank you so much for being here, and for being so beautiful and happy.” She expressed, waving to people who were losing their minds in the front row. Her moment of appreciation was sweet, but the show must go on. She screamed into her microphone, encouraging everyone to jump with her for the rest of her set.
I still can’t get over the lights she had strobing in everyone’s faces. Because paired with her energetic singing, and all her swearing to get the crowd moving more than it already was, it felt like I was at a rave. The unresting flashing lights and an entire sold-out venue dancing like no one’s watching were insanely fun and made the show go by so quickly. Before I knew it, Charli was singing “2099” while engulfed in green lights, and we all watched her walk off stage.
I then feared for Corona’s structure. There was so much stomping and shouting, my seat on the second floor was shaking. Absolutely everyone was chanting “Charli! Charli! Charli!” over and over again. And she let them cheer for her for a good bit, the screams resonating from every direction in the dark venue.
Finally, Charli found her way back in front of Montreal, and played a four-track encore consisting of “Unlock It”, “I Love It” by Icona Pop, “Boys”, and “1999”. Once Charli had sang her last note, she took a minute to express her gratitude. At least, she tried to over all the screams. Her final quote was, “I love you all! My name is Charli XCX bitches! Bye!”
That show was a whole lot of fun. From Blinding lights to high pitched vocals that leave you with your jaw dropped, Charli XCX really left Montreal stunned and wanting more. Next time she comes back, You’ll find me dancing in the pit.
Review – Jamie Siddall
Photos – Eric Brisson