Venue: The Coliseum, Hard Rock Hotel, Singapore
Date: 21st November 2014
Promoter: Forefront Asia
Review by: Hanis A.
Special Thanks: The Forefront Asia/The Gathering team
Everything about the performance Chvrches put up on Friday night almost captured the vibe of a scandalous rave from the 80s. The lights were bright and colourful and their sound, brimming with synthesizers, not to mention the inevitable smoke machine. Chvrches came on stage to an almost full house, made up of people of all ages. From the old to the young, everyone came to dance. Indeed, everyone was definitely moving to the beat throughout the night.
The Glaswegians opened with the ever familiar “We Sink”. A good start to get the crowd going with its constant steady pulse, slowly picking up to an epic finish. This song alone set the mood for the rest of the evening. The ever-brimming sound of the synthesizer came off so well in the next track, “Lies”. It was easy to get lost in the organized mess of synth-beats and Lauren’s anthemic vocals. “Lungs” brought the crowd down to a simmer, but everyone was still up to singing along with Lauren. In between songs, Lauren spoke to the crowd, thanking them for coming to their second show in Singapore, sharing some of their experiences throughout their journey since then.
When “Gun” was played, everyone recognized those first notes and could tell exactly what was coming up. The same can be said with their performance of “Night Sky”. When the first few beats came on, the crowd instantly went wild! They already knew this was a great song to watch live, and it certainly was. It had everything – a slow and steady start to get the crowd going and several sudden up tempos to let them go crazy. “Get Away” encapsulated everything about that night, the hazy 80s synthpop beats was appropriately presented through this particular song.
“Science/Visions” felt vastly different. Not many seemed familiar with the song or even knew how to dance to it but Chvrches turned it into a visual presentation. Bright lights came on at different sound effects, and the suspenseful beat provided a different vibe from the rest of their music, which really captured the audience’s attention.
Chvrches kept a long quiet pause before playing to build up to the explosive charm that was “Recover”, a personal favourite. The fans definitely responded to it, and sang along. Immediately after, Chvrches settled the crowd with “Tether” which exuded a beautiful calm amidst the raging synthpop beats. Its anthemic lyrics, up till the last bit of explosive synthesizer notes had everyone at The Coliseum let go and jump around, dancing without a care.
Iain took the lead on the next tune, “Under The Tide”. It was such an easy song to get lost into. The steady rhythm kept the audience going and Iain’s vocals kept everything nice and calm, giving off an extremely mellow vibe.
They finally played the inevitable “The Mother We Share” as a closer, the band’s debut single. It was a suitable finish to end the night, except there was more. The crowd demanded for an encore, and Iain came on to sing “You Caught The Light” to slowly get the crowd going again. The track is a delight to hear on good headphones – however, the acoustics of The Coliseum hindered the ambience of his slow, echoey vocals. Iain still gave his all and let the beats do the talking. Lauren and Martin joined him on stage to introduce the song “Dead Air” from the latest Hunger Games movie soundtrack.
To conclude their set, the trio performed “By The Throat”, an appropriate finale with its flashing lights, echoey vocals, and danceable beats. It was indeed a night of synthpop and bright lights with Chvrches, and they did not disappoint!