Charli XCX – SWG3

By Ryan Louch

The future of pop is here.

On a cold Sunday night deep within the heart of Glasgow, a new kind of pop star was performing her latest album. Charli XCX, pop innovator and experimentalist, took her fans on a futuristic ride through her old and current tracks on her latest tour supporting her new album Charli. Fans were dressed up in Y2K fashion and some even dressed as Taxi’s, a nod to the unreleased track that has been a burden of Charli’s life since it was leaked back in 2017.

Opener, Next Level, Charli set the tone for the whole night, Charli ferociously singing into the mic with passion and power as her fans shout every word back at her with the same exact heat.

Performing in front of a giant colour changing cube that adapted to the mood of each track, giving the stage a futuristic and avant-garde appeal, Charli commanded the crowd to jump and rave whilst playing her latest tracks and some fan favourites.

Her self-titled album has numerous features on its tracks but she still performed them as if they were her completely her own. The Christine and The Queens assisted, Gone, pulsated and rippled over the crowd whilst songs like Vroom Vroom and I Got It turned the night into a rave fuelled atmosphere.

The singers heavily auto-tuned vocals took to new heights over the deep thumping bass.

Songs like Silver Cross and February 2019 all sounded astounding whilst her vocal delivery on songs such as Thoughts and White Mercedes were strong and breath-taking.

Taking the attention away from her at one moment, she brought out drag queens and dancers to join her on stage during Shake It, an extremely experimental and pumping track that features Big Freedia, Cuppcakke and Brooke Candy. The queens and dancers brought a bit of sass and their own energy to the song and it was great to see Charli continue to express her love for the LGBT+ community and shine light on local talent.

Charli’s vision of experimental pop music is refreshing and edgy, bringing a new type of flair to the genre. She’s even called herself the future of pop and it’s evident in these shows.

Track 10, a song from her previous mixtape pop 2, highlights just how Charli can make a song futuristic but current at the same time. The track’s outro transitions into the poppier version which was the lead single from Charli, Blame It On Your Love which features Lizzo.

The set ends with her more chart friendly hits, I Love It, Boys and 1999, ending the concert on a very strong note, one of which the future looks bright.

Charli XCX is certainly a force to be reckoned with.

Her stage presence and attitude is just what we need in today’s pop landscape. Who knows which direction she will take next in her career but whatever it will be, it’ll definitely be another left-field venture.

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