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Lorde at The Prudential Center- Newark, NJ

Lorde at the Prudential Center

“What are you doing tomorrow night?” My favorite text to get. Especially when I’m not doing anything that tomorrow night. Island Girl had two free tickets to see Lorde. I happened to be free and the show was 15 minutes from the house so it was an easy yes. Seems a friend had won the tickets from the radio, now we had to figure out how to get them to me. The physical tickets were two hours south but I convinced them to send me pictures that included the barcode. If it scans, the people at the door are happy. Boost the screen brightness and the phone becomes the ticket. Many were skeptical but it worked fine. I even posted the second ticket on Facebook looking for someone to come join me. No takers but damn if I’m not generous… with my free stuff.

I had heard her hit song and had seen Lorde on the Grammy’s and the Nirvana tribute but she was not what I expected live. My expectation was a dark and broody vibe. I had only seen her in black looking intense. Tonight, she was covered in glitter and giddy with excitement. She managed some basic choreography with a stack of back up dancers and took time to express her gratitude. While she wasn’t what I expected, It was a reminder that she is a young star in the pop machine and she’s just so happy to be here.

Lorde actually writes her own lyrics and chooses to focus on her voice vs learning another instrument. She spent time talking about writing, relationships, and how interactions can be immortalized in song. “You shouldn’t have dated a writer!” she explained to an ex in an anecdote. The crowd connected to these stories and shared their love with her from the stands.

The crowd did sway heavily female and you could hear it in the cheers. Nothing like having no line for a bathroom. Quite a shift. Walking around before the show I noticed youth and quasi-counterculture vibes. A mix of store-bought hipster, experimental self-expression, and just edgy enough for a night out with my mom chaperoning me. I saw a Joy Division shirt tucked into tight acid-washed jeans. I saw gold-shimmer boots under long black skirts held up with bright suspenders over knit tube-tops. Interesting hairstyles, fun jewelry, and even those moms were having fun too. Everyone was excited, they cheered for each song, and they screamed for the hits.

At one point in her set, she mentioned having recorded a track in NJ. Then came mention of Bruce. The older members of the crowd started with deep long cries of “Bruuuuuuuuuce!” I hoped Lorde knew this was not a “boo.” More evidence that she’s a writer who listens to words, and appreciates the craft of songwriting.

All in, it was a unique miracle and I’m glad I went to experience a new fandom, hear some good tunes and get my pop on. I would like to hear some future collaborations with Lorde and see how her vibe shifts over time.

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