Concert Review: Kacey Musgraves Live In Auckland

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I knew Kacey Musgraves was taking the world by storm, especially after Coachella, but I think I underestimated her influence. As I arrived at the Town Hall the line was going down Queen St. I was a bit worried I’d miss the opening act but luckily security & ticketing were efficient and I got in with plenty of time to spare.

Bahamas (Afie Jurvanen) kicked off the show. He was joined by two band members. The casually-dressed three-piece took centre stage and the room was full of light as they performed. The crowd had packed in at least half and continued to flow in. Afie is from Canada and mentioned he had actually played in NZ before and had to recap about his countless visits to Piha. I also loved that he made jokes about how he’s the opening act and how he understands people just want to see Kacey etc. “If you visit the souvenir stand and can buy one album, buy Kacey’s. but if you can buy two please buy one of ours. They’re heavy and I don’t want to take them home”

His music suited the venue & crowd very well and I loved the levels of the sound (shout out to the sound guy!). But the combo of light and sound was perfect and even though the crowd wasn’t overly interested, Bahamas still seemed to be having a good time. As I mentioned when I reviewed Broods, crowds have a problem of talking during the opening act, this show was similar, which was the only disappointing part. “The best part is it’s almost over. You’re doing great though!”. I really enjoyed the set and most of the crowd seemed to too. But there’s no doubt this crowd was there to have a good night.

There was a surprise guest in the crowd as Chloe Grace Moretz was present to catch Spacey Kacey as well! If you weren’t aware, she is here working on a film. I love how she is into her gigs!

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Now there’s no doubt the crowd was excited for Kacey to take the stage. Some even made more of an effort on the outfits with cowboy hats, rainbow colours and sparkles all present. As the lights went down her six-piece band took the stage first. I found it amazing that they were all dressed in brown suits and turtle necks, though one band member had a sparkly headband on for flair. Kacey Musgraves took centre stage with two strong white lights on her, which made her seem almost angelic. Her two-piece was beautiful and matched her visuals and lighting very well. As she got into the show it almost seemed like a classic set up or a full band and beautiful coloured lights. However, the curtain eventually parted to reveal a screen displaying some space and floral visuals to accompany a few of the songs.

There was no way that she couldn’t acknowledge the crowd, letting them know it was her “first time here and she might not leave”. Like Bahamas, she then touched on her visit to “yeehaw. I mean Piha!” And told the crowd how she rode horses on the beach etc. Then to be blunt she got the crowd to put their middle fingers in the air. Even the older members of the crowd were encouraged to join in. Though don’t get her wrong, Kacey is all about spreading love! The crowd definitely resonated with that as they sang so loudly that for a couple of tracks which led Kacey to leave parts up to the crowd to do. Those moments were beautiful as the colourful lighting lit such a stunning room. The venue was perfect for Kacey and the sound and lighting really were perfect for it. I really couldn’t fault any of the technical side of her performance. In saying that Kacey gave props to her crew, “the many people that make this happen” and introduced her band. “And I’m Spacey Kacey, your host for the night”. She also then thanked Bahamas.

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Touching on love Kacey wanted to remind the crowd that “Love will always win. It may take the long way but in the end, it will win. Or maybe it will all end and we’re in the shitter. But I’m holding on to hope”. Kacey’s incredible voice really rang out through the hall. “Thank you so much for choosing to spend your night with me. They don’t really play me on the radio so it means a lot”. She was backlight by a rainbow line of lights that rose up to the roof as she played the keys. This was obviously fitting as the track she performed was called ‘Rainbow’. Kacey was lit up with a standard light as well. It was almost like she was a star in the rainbow. “Thank you so much Auckland, you guys are the shit!” But there’s no way Kacey was just going to go out quietly like that. As she performed ‘High Horse’ she danced around the stage with a rainbow flowing fan as sparkly unicorn visuals played out on the screens. Sending the crowd out with a fun & magical bang!

I didn’t know Kacey’s music before tonight and I have to say she is a powerhouse of a woman. Her performance was visually and vocally so incredible! I am definitely a new fan. But I want to end this review on an important note that Kacey said “Spread love. It will always come back”.

SETLIST:

Slow Burn
Wonder Women
Butterflies
Lonely Weekend
Happy & Sad
Merry
Western J – High Time
Golden Hour
Die Fun

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Mother
OWAW
Family
Love Is A Wild Thing

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Velvet Elvis
I Will Survive (cover)
Space Cowboy
Arrow
Rainbow
High Horse