LIVE REVIEW: Billie Eilish – Riverstage

Billie Eilish is the biggest artist in the world right now, and there’s no denying that fact. Ever since exploding on the scene in 2016 she has been impressing people with her mature and dark take on growing up and self discovery. The seventeen year old singer-songwriter is back in Australia for a run of regional dates with Groovin The Moo as well as some much anticipated headline shows. After selling these shows out within seconds they instantly became the hottest tickets of the year to have and the energy pulsating from the Brisbane crowd at The Riverstage perfectly represented that. As the crowd at the front continued to surge in the lead up to Eilish’s arrival, police and touring personnel took to the stage to ask them to move back otherwise the show wouldn’t go ahead. With many failed attempts, they finally got the crowd to slightly calm down but as soon as the lights dimmed all bets were off. With deafening screams erupting over the hillside of The Riverstage, a dark animated video introduction set the moody tone of the show. Running out on-stage to the inescapable beat of ‘Bad Guy’ the show’s energy took full form. Hearing the crowd singalong to every lyric perfectly with such passion was something unimaginable. Their loud singing almost drowned out her vocals and it was pure magic because you knew just how happy everyone was in that moment. “How you guys doing tonight? Are you ready to turn up?” she screamed as she rolled into ‘My Strange Addiction’ and ‘You Should See Me In A Crown’. The moody lighting and accompanying dark visuals perfectly reflected the moody and honest storytelling behind her music. It also matched the way she moved across the stage. Jumping on-top of platforms and gliding across the stage she would take moments to just stand still and intensely stare into the crowd and soak in every moment. ‘Idontwannabeyouanymore’ and a medley of early favourites ‘Watch’ and ‘&burn’ offered a reflective energy whilst ‘Copycat’ turned the volume up and had her getting everyone to sit on the floor and then jump as high as they could when the beat dropped. 

She flowed in between the eclectic ‘When I Was Older’, ‘Wish You Were Gay’, ‘Xanny’, ‘All The Good Girls Go To Hell’ and ‘Ilomilo’ which showcased tracks from her highly acclaimed debut album ‘When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?’. Before playing ‘Listen Before I Go’ she asked the crowd to take a deep breath in and out which was a subtle nod to the mental health and anxiety content of her songs. ‘I Love You’ and ‘Ocean Eyes’ were simple and beautiful moments as everyone in the venue illuminated their phones creating a sea of lights before they all started to bounce like crazy for the infectious ‘Bellyache’. Encouraging everyone to live in the moment and allow themselves to feel exactly what they were feeling in that very moment whether they were having the best night of their lives or the worst. She asked the crowd to put away their phones for the reflective ‘When The Party’s Over’ before bowing out to the angsty ‘Bury A Friend’. Her setlist was constructed immaculately with the perfect flow of ballads and beat heavy tracks that continually elevated the mood. The screams were deafening and the singalong’s were loud as everyone on that hillside felt lucky to be there and witnessing a show that is marking the start of a very long career for Billie Eilish. Throughout the whole show you could tell that Eilish’s heart and mind was very much placed within the music and hearing a crowd of that size sing it back to her obviously meant a lot.