Harry Styles is beckoned ‘home’ to his Northern roots as he serenades fans with new tunes from his chart topping album ‘Harrys House’ across two sold out nights in Manchester.
Anticipating tonights godly showmanship, fans race towards the venue to secure their place for tonights performance. Fan power is shown in full force today as ‘Harries’ show off an array of the most camp and well accessorised outfits known to man. Cowboy hats and 80s style feather boas flood the usually male dominated cricket ground set on the streets of Stretford. Screeching and singalongs to Styles earlier work can be heard once again confirming this to be an unforgettable, high flying affair.
From Elton John dress ups and fruit themed costume, the eye is kept invariably entertained as the stadium begins to scatter with miscellaneous rainbow feather fall out.
As you move further into the wilderness of pink sunnies and sparkly flares, conversations between fellow supporters can be heard. Reminiscing on the golden era of the One Direction days and recent drama around former band member Liam Payne- enough gossip to keep you entertained while you await the first production of the evening.
British fans have been starved of Harrys live performances due to covid and a multi date, sold out US stadium tour. First on this leg of the tour was Glasgow, and content vitrality from socials (TikTok particularly) has not been sparse- only elevating the hype of long awaited upcoming dates.
Opening is Japanese- American singer songwriter and self proclaimed ‘music therapist’ Mitski. Known for her theatrical choreography and genre bending heartbreak poetry, she has only brought additional traction to the tour.
However, I cannot help but feel the undeniable tension amongst fans. Styles admirers, at the base, are mainstream pop fanatics at heart and her abstract performance is not something I think they were hoping for.
She flits on to the stage effortlessly in a sky blue satin co ord and begins to recite her most popular songs such as ‘I Bet On Losing Dogs’ and ‘Nobody’- which won some applause and echoing from the spectators below. The performance felt likeably eerie and contemporary unlike anything most have seen before from a vocally based set.
She assures fans ‘Harry is on soon, don’t worry’ as she swiftly brings a close to her last song.
Tensions run high as stage time approaches for the Bowie-esque superstar. Much like a football stadium, chants begin in an instant and cries of “HARRY,HARRY,HARRY!” Can be, I’m sure, heard for miles. Fabricating an atmosphere like no other.
The screens ahead run black as Styles band approaches the main stage, and the opening to ever popular ‘Music For A Sushi Restaurant’ is made clear through the immeasurable stadium speakers. Fans become unmanageable as the man of the evening takes centre stage and welcomes the crowd. ‘Man- how are we feeling tonight?!’ Is met with ecstatic adulation through the stands.
Harry makes sure to let listeners know ‘how happy he is to be home’ and that ‘some of his happiest times have been in Manchester’. The singer dazzles in a striped Cherry themed Gucci fit with personalised initial relaxed fit denim. This all begins to feel extremely intimate and genuine and for such an enormously successful artist he remains so grounded and grateful towards everyone in the venue.
He leads further into the concert with songs like ‘Daylight’ and ‘Adore You’- that consist of twinkly melodies and an undeniably clear West-Coast American sway. Styles calls on fans to ‘hold each other’ and ‘treat everyone with kindness’ while reassuring fans ‘he’s got them’ and ultimately present in the moment with them.
Undoubtedly, the fan interaction is unparalleled as he calls on the crowd to locate his first ever teacher Ms Burnam who appears to be within the thousands of people watching today. The cameras point directly to the teacher and harry begins to wave frantically back at her- which creates the most heartwarming moment. Verifying once again; Harry really is the Nations most wanted boyfriend.
As tunes ‘Matilda’ and ‘Boyfriends’ ring out, the mood changes drastically. Emotions are high and tears are inevitable for many fans including myself. The music reaching people in a way not many artists deem possible. Mellow acoustics and accompanying piano allow for a calming ambience to surround the sea of people. ‘Sign Of The Times’ becomes another stand out juncture, as an abundance of lights illuminate the crowd and make for an extremely sentimental reception.
This prodigious spectacle ends with fan favourite ‘Kiwi’ which involves Harry, much like a performing whale, emphatically spitting his bottled water onto the crowd below. A turbulent rock n roll instrumental that leaves fans hurdling and bounding around with every last scrap of energy they have.
Without a doubt, Styles is soon to be eminent with the likes of flamboyant high flyers like Bowie and Freddie Mercury. A UK tour that will be commemorated infinitely. A display bound to leave fans ‘Late Night Talking’.
Setlist Music for a Sushi Restaurant Golden Adore You Daylight Cinema Keep Driving Matilda Boyfriends Lights Up Satellite Canyon Moon Treat People with Kindness What Makes You Beautiful Late Night Talking Love of My Life
Encore Sign of the Times Watermelon Sugar As It Was Kiwi