Lorde Festival D'Été de Québec, Quebec City, July 13

Lorde Festival D'Été de Québec, Quebec City, July 13
Photo: Renaud Phillipe
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It was fitting that Lorde headlined the festival on Friday the 13th, casting a spell over the crowd from the moment she walked on stage. Adorned in all gold everything — earrings, eye shadow, necklace — the young star delivered a set that was as energetic as it was emotional.
 
Her silhouette flitted across the stage beneath a billowy, sheer, fur-trimmed yellow outfit (looking like the lovechild of Kate Bush and Big Bird in the best possible way), following her whims, but also effortlessly falling into choreography when she chose to do so. The festival show was toned down from her recent "Melodrama World Tour," with fewer stage stunts and outfit changes, and a reduced team of backup dancers, but it was nevertheless enrapturing.
 
Launching into Melodrama standouts "Sober" and "Homemade Dynamite," Lorde managed to make a field of tens of thousands of people feel like an intimate house party. That vibe continued when she asked the massive crowd, "Do you feel like dancing tonight?" and then provided the soundtrack with "Tennis Court."
 
Other older cuts also made the set list, including "Magnets," "Buzzcut Season," "400 Lux," "Royals" and "Team," but it was the Melodrama tunes that really got Lorde opening up to the audience.
 
A teary introduction to "Liability" provided a moving moment in the midst of an otherwise upbeat show. As Lorde explained the origin of the song, describing the loneliness that inspired it and the trip to California where she wrote it, she was met with a sparkling sea of cell phone lights. She even included a nod to prior performer Cyndi Lauper with a "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" interlude mid-way through the song.
 
"Supercut" and "Perfect Places" livened up the party once again, but it was the explosion of lights, energy and confetti during closer "Green Light" that stood out as the highlight of the evening, sending the crowd off into the night on a high.

Lorde's album Melodrama is out on Umusic in a range of formats, including digital downloadCD and vinyl.