“IIf you’re looking for a savior, I’m not,” Lourdes sings, eyes wide and solemn. She clutches her microphone to her chest like a bridal bouquet. Behind her stands a ensemble in elegant suits spread like a veil. She smiles in conspiracy.
The New Zealand pop star spends a lot of her eye-catching two-hour stage performances protesting that she isn’t actually the “leader of a new regime”. The enthusiastic Edinburgh crowd would not believe her. Ella Yelich-O’Connor fans have been excited since her sexy debut, Pure Heroine in 2013; The exhausting and feisty melodrama of 2017 only deepened this devotion.
Last year’s solar felt like a rebirth as it replaced contrasting synths and late-night fun in exchange for solar salutes and gently playing guitars. Radiant Laurel Canyon coordinates introduction lyrics about climate change practices and wellness rather than dance floor drama, but on stage these disparate albums find common ground in themes of escape from reality and utopia. An upbeat and sinister song about “trying to heal from the inside out,” the Mood Ring brings new color to Sober 2017, a stunning, self-conscious party song that seeks comfort in “alcoholic and lemony.”
However, Lord admits that writing memoir-like songs feels like time travel — “it can take you to the beat” — and sometimes the contrast is pretty sharp. The elegant meander lacks an Oceanic feel that is closer to the trend as it follows the intense euphoria of the previous single green light.
The stunning stage is shaped like a sundial with an elongated ladder that balances the glowing spheres diligently to restore balance. Lord climbs a bough above old age and fame for Fallen Fruit, a talkative eulogy that imagines humans leaving Earth with only a “bag full of seeds.”
Some considered smugly the incoherent song of the same name, in which Lorde refers to himself as “Jesus the Most Beautiful”. But seeing her convince the Scottish public of the universality of the long, hot summer spent in “wet bikini” ensures that her flock will follow Lord’s lead. As the room floods with warm, healing lighting, she calms down with joy, “What have I done to deserve you?”