Gigs can be really bloody special places. It feels like such an obvious statement; the months of build-up, that excitement as it draws nearer, the moment you turn the corner and see your favourite’s name up in lights. Tonight is all about one thing, and that’s the show ahead. A feeling of real life melting away and dancing in the puddles left behind perfectly captures why Sigrid never fails to disappoint. It’s also why there really is no stopping the rise of the next worldwide pop sensation.
On paper, headlining Brixton Academy is quite something for where Sigrid is today. Two EPs out, a succession of mammoth singles but yet no album (watch this space) – it’s a testament to the power of pure pop perfection that she stands in front of a sold-out room at one of the capital’s most significant venues. Big hooks and a personality that welcomes you in, the journey from topping polls earlier in the year makes perfect sense. For Sigrid, there’s never been any doubt.
Bounding on stage with the sort of energy that could knock down a train, there’s a palpable feeling in the air of a fresh new voice. Throughout an hour and a bit, Sigrid puts on the sort of display that most acts can only dream of – crowning a night full of sizzling highs and immediate warmth. Opener ‘Sucker Punch’ is a line in the sand for what’s to come, a brave set that isn’t afraid to show off the full flairs of an artist redefining how marvellous pop can be, and with a knack for making the biggest moments feel even bigger.
From ‘Schedules’ to ‘Plot Twist’, Sigrid has a remarkable portfolio already nestled in her back pocket, not just an underground blog sensation but a crossover superstar. Energy radiating off the grand stage she finds herself on, it’s in Sigrid remaining true to herself that the show really elevates. Yes, there are pop hooks all over the place and wondrous moments of collective jubilation, but it still feels like you’re hanging out with a mate; one that can both gather everyone up into a bouncing mass, and silence a room with awe (as shown when ‘Dynamite’ slices through like a click in a pin-drop service). It never feels like she’s reaching, but rather a natural manifestation of the person she is.
Each song pulsates with something new. ‘Go To War’ is a tribal pound that you could probably hear knocking down the street by Brixton station; ‘High Five’ rips through the room triggering smiles on every single face, and ‘Fake Friends’ is drowned out with fans singing along. An encore ode in the form of ‘Focus’ finds Sigrid alone on stage, the room lighting up in front of her. This is no one hit wonder, but an artist who refuses to bow to expectations or settle for average. That’s abundantly clear when ‘Don’t Kill My Vibe’ triggers an eruption in sound that feels like a festival Main Stage coronation rather than another show for an act only just getting started, and closer ‘Strangers’ throbs and kicks with enough force to make this grand building practically move under its weight.
It’s in that world where tonight not only feels like a celebration but a point towards the future. New tracks yet to drop like the darkness-tinged ‘Savage In Our Blood’ and the punchy ‘Credit’ fit like a glove into the set, an extension of everything that makes Sigrid stand out from the pack – while ‘Haunted’ swoons its way into view like an anthem ready to take on radio airplay. This isn’t the peak of the mountain, but just another stop on the way to a top still not yet clear, and that’s what’s so exciting.
Words: Jamie Muir