24 Feb 2018
UsernamePassword

Remember Me? | Join | Recover
Click here to sign in via social networking

Harry Styles @ Spark Arena, Auckland - 2/12/2017

04 Dec 2017 // A review by Channel1
It must be interesting being Harry Styles. Thrown into the limelight to be the focal point for one of the highest selling pop acts ever. Touring the world playing nothing smaller than a stadium and trying to remain grounded. He seems to have done it well and tonight is part of the next step in transitioning to a more mature audience as reflected by the songs on his debut solo album.

I wanted to approach this gig as if it was by an artist I had never heard of. It was quite easy as I have never heard a song by 1D and have only caught snippets of his solo album. I walked up to Spark Arena around 8.15 pm expecting crazy queues and hoping to catch a quick beer at the Tuning Fork before the show. The area outside the arena was completely deserted. You would not have thought there was a gig taking place and I pretty much had the Tuning Fork all to myself!

Maybe it was because most of the people at the show are teenage girls? Maybe it's because Harry wants to hit the town early after the show but for whatever reason, he is going to be onstage at 8.45PM meaning I had missed the support act and was in for an early night. 8.30 pm and the arena inside was packed!

The stage set up was simple. Just a video screen either side and a wall of lights as a backdrop. The lights go down and then it happens. The noise of twelve thousand screaming teenage girls is quite something. Kind of like a high pitched jet engine. Harry is used to it!

Guitar in hand, he walks to the mic stand and smiles. The place goes batshit. The opening numbers are mid-paced like he is trying to get a feel for the crowd and I wondered how much more of a connection he could make if the show was in a smaller venue. Those years of playing venues like this though have paid off and once the tempo ups and Harry the showman appears. He connects with the crowd by pointing out individuals and talking to them or about them. One girl called Lauren is selected as it is her birthday (really?) and the crowd sing happy birthday to her. He also grabs a rainbow flag from someone in the crowd and wraps it around his mic stand.

Cliched, cheesy? It could be and I must admit he does tell the crowd he loves them a lot more than is probably necessary but then he gets back to the music it works. He makes it seem effortless, he isn't trying too hard, or even trying to be credible. It appears Harry has done what most ex-boy band members don't and after years of being given one direction, he has successfully chosen own.

He is clearly loving his new rock star persona and he does it well. The seventies tinged ballads are interspersed with two rockier versions of a couple of 1D songs but Kiwi is the moment that both singer and audience have been waiting for. He teased it earlier in the set and after just a couple of lines the crowd have taken over. He stops the song and berates the crowd for "not singing loud enough" and then launches into a full-on high energy version of the song which shows he may just have the ability to make the transition from pop star to rock star.

It's all wrapped up with Sign Of The Times and I head out trying to avoid being swamped by thousands of hyperventilating teenagers.


Review written by Paul Goddard

Other Reviews By Channel1

Gig Review: Foo Fighters @ Mount Smart Stadium, Auckland - 03/02/2018
04 Feb 2018 // by Channel1
It had been raining on and off for most of the day but just as Wellington band Ayn Randy took the stage the heavens opened. It set the scene for what was going to be an awesome night where the weather played a big part in the memories of the 40,000 people packed into Auckland's Mount Smart Stadium.
Read More...
Santa Barbara - Single Review: Marianne's Dark Eyes
01 Feb 2018 // by Channel1
I love Santa Barbara. I am lucky enough to visit there once a year and it's a funky little town about two hours from LA LA Land with a laid-back vibe and it also knows how to get down and dirty on a weekend.
Read More...
Festival Review: Laneway 2018 @ Albert Street Precinct, Auckland - 29/01/2018
30 Jan 2018 // by Channel1
2017 was my first time at Laneway. I went for one reason only and that was to see Refused.
Read More...
Gig Review: Bleeders @ House of Vans, Shed 10, Auckland - 20/01/2018
30 Jan 2018 // by Channel1
So this event kind of took everyone by surprise. The global entity that is House of Vans announced a music/skate festival to be based at Shed 10 on Auckland's waterfront.
Read More...
Gig Review: End of an Era Night 1 @ Kings Arms, Auckland - 26/01/2018
29 Jan 2018 // by Channel1
I arrived early for this first of two nights of bands who have come together to say goodbye to iconic Auckland venue the Kings Arms, which will finally close its doors at the end of February. Punters are slowly streaming in for the opening band A Doubtful Sound (isn't that the best name ever for a Kiwi Band) but the band don't care about how many people are in the room and hit the set full tilt.
Read More...
EP review: Hault
06 Jan 2018 // by Channel1
The 90's will always be my favourite decade for music. It was a time when rock bands took a punk attitude and melded it with face melting heavy 70's style riffs and this is all perfectly summed up in the Sonic Youth doco 1991 the year that punk broke (check it out).
Read More...
Future Islands with Silicon @ Powerstation Auckland - 16/12/2017
19 Dec 2017 // by Channel1
This dude can dance. He is on another planet.
Read More...
Gig Review: Armed in Advance, Fallstate and AnimalHead @ Backbeat, Auckland - 8/12/2017
16 Dec 2017 // by Channel1
Back at Backbeat. Deja vu, is a feeling you get when you see a lot of bands in Auckland.
Read More...
View All Articles By Channel1

NZ Top 10 Singles

  • GOD'S PLAN
    Drake
  • FINESSE (REMIX)
    Bruno Mars And Cardi B
  • ALL THE STARS
    Kendrick Lamar And SZA
  • THESE DAYS
    Rudimental feat. Jess Glynne, Macklemore And Dan Caplen
  • PERFECT
    Ed Sheeran
  • IDGAF
    Dua Lipa
  • I FALL APART
    Post Malone
  • MINE
    Bazzi
  • MEANT TO BE
    Bebe Rexha And Florida Georgia Line
  • NEVER BE THE SAME
    Camila Cabello
View the Full NZ Top 40...
muzic.net.nz Logo
100% New Zealand Music
All content on this website is copyright to muzic.net.nz and other respective rights holders. Redistribution of any material presented here without permission is prohibited.
Report a ProblemReport A Problem