It was only over a year ago that Post Malone was in Australia playing a coveted dusk set at FOMO Festival with a string of sold out theatre side-shows also under his belt. Since then, the 23 year old singer/songwriter/rapper has dominated the mainstream charts, released his highly anticipated sophomore album ‘Beerbongs & Bentleys’, received four Grammy nominations and deservingly upgraded to arena status with his explosive live show. It’s no surprise that his return to Australia was received with quite a lot of hype following multiple shows in each city instantly selling out and being added. After hitting up Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne, “The Posty” as his fans admiringly call him, finally made his way back to Brisbane for two nights at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre.
As the crowd started to make their way into the arena, Tyla Yaweh was wrapping up a fairly disjointed set with his breakthrough single ‘She Bad’. His vocals were almost un-hearable over the backing track which had members of the crowd looking around at each other and questioning whether he was lip-synching or not. But I have to give it to him, the boy can DANCE. He grooved his way across the stage during the final number which finally saw him winning over the majority of the crowd.
It’s not always that you see another iconic name as the support act for a major artist like Post Malone but for this special leg of the tour Jaden Smith returned to Australia for his first string of shows down under. The son of Will Smith and Jada Pinket Smith is a massive name in pop culture. From starring in movies such as The Karate Kid, The Pursuit Of Happiness, ‘The Day The Earth Stood Still’ and ‘After Earth’ to running his own fashion label and being a sought after brand spokesperson, he’s become quite a successful twenty year old. On top of all of that he also launched a very successful rap career which saw him releasing his debut album ‘Syre’ in 2017. So he seemed like the perfect special guest to join Post Malone on his massive arena tour and he didn’t disappoint. Running out to a sea of phone lights, Jaden kicked off his thirty minute set with the hyped tracks ‘B’ and ‘Ghost’. “Brissy, are you having a good time tonight?” he excitingly asked as he paced up and down the catwalk. Keeping the momentum going he played ‘Fallen’, ‘Goku’, ‘Batman’ and ‘Plastic’ from his last couple of releases which had the crowd on the floor bouncing. Bringing his friend Harry Hudson out onto the stage, they performed their reflective duet ‘Just Slide’ which showed a different side to him and also complimented a later performance of the unreleased ‘Summertime’ which shows a lot of promise and growth with his artistry. Closing the set with ‘Beautiful Disruption’ and ‘Icon’ he thanked the crowd and left on a massive high. A lot of people in the crowd were a little skeptical of his genuine rapping talent prior to his performance but as soon as he left they were sold. He delivered a strong set that showed a lot of promise for an artist who is figuring out his unique path. I was slightly hoping he would add his rap from Justin Bieber’s ‘Never Say Never’ for a bit of nostalgia, but alas, he didn’t.
With the crowd now at full capacity, the lights dimmed as the intro of ‘Zack & Codeine’ blasted through the arena. With the massive light box suspending into the air from the catwalk, Post Malone appeared at the back of the stage holding a red solo cup in the air as fireworks exploded when the beat kicked in. Sliding straight into ‘Too Young’ and a pyrotechnic fuelled performance of ‘Over Now’, he impressively had the whole crowd singing back every word to him. Taking a moment to look out the sea of 13,000 faces that came out to see him on a Saturday night he exclaimed with gratitude “Thank you so fucking much, ladies and gentlemen”. Before confidently slurring “I’m here to to play the musical stylings of Post Malone and get fucked up whilst doing it” as he downed another drink. Keeping the energy at an all time high, ‘Better Now’, ‘No Option’, ’92 Explorer’, ‘Candy Paint’ and recent single ‘Wow’ continued the singalong’s. As I looked around the arena I was quite impressed with the amount of people standing up and singing along to every word because sometimes Brisbane crowds can get a bit complacent once they’re put into a seated arena setting. But after all, it was a Saturday night and they weren’t going to let The Posty party by himself so ‘Psycho’, ‘I Fall Apart’ and ‘Up There’ held the energy well.
The stage design for the show was simple but effective. With a catwalk erected from the main base of the stage he spent the whole show walking up and down it. which allowed him to be in a more prominent viewing spot for everyone throughout the 80 minute show. Two giant LED screen stood on either side of the catwalk which broadcasted visuals whilst the giant lightbox suspended on top of him delivered a very impressive lighting show full of strobes. However the only thing missing from this show was a live band. He was completely alone on stage with no DJ, dancers or band and it felt a little lonely. It would’ve been great to see him interacting with band members and electrifying the guitar solos and drum beats that really drove his recent album. But the massive pyrotechnics and lighting display made up for that lost opportunity whilst he also interacted with the crowd a lot and gave them quirky unique moments. With the crowd chanting for him to do a shoey, he asked members of the crowd to throw him a shoe which too many people enthusiastically did. And it was moments like this that made his show feel so humble.
For ‘Stay’ he stripped things back and played an acoustic guitar which was a rare intimate moment that the crowd lived for. Hyping them back up with ‘Leave’, ‘Go Flex’ and his debut single ‘White Iverson’ he started preparing the crowd for three of his biggest singles to date. ‘Sunflower’ was up first which was a reflective singalong full of high emotions before a massive explosion signalled the start of the anthemic ‘Rockstar’. Keeping to his genuine beliefs and humble persona, he opted out of doing a pre-organised encore and just closed out the show with the worldwide breakthrough hit ‘Congratulations’. But he didn’t leave without giving the crowd an uplifting speech about reaching for your dreams and never giving up. “They said I wouldn’t be nothing. Now they always say congratulations”. And with that, he was gone.
Post Malone is the new age rockstar. His likeable personality stems from the fact that he was just a normal guy who worked hard and made something of himself. When he performs you can tell he’s living in the moment and doesn’t take a second for granted and that’s what his fans gravitate towards. His live show was very vibey and complimented the music well but it would’ve been even more fulfilled with a live band that we could see him bouncing off.
Check out the full gallery captured by Jordan Rogers-Smith Photography HERE;
Photos by Jordan Rogers Smith
Remaining Post Malone Australian Tour Dates
Sunday 5 May – Brisbane Entertainment Centre, Brisbane
Tuesday 6 May – Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney
Wednesday 8 May – Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney
Thursday 9 May – Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney