Friday, May 25, 2012

Only If For A Night: Florence and the Machine Sydney Entertainment Centre May 24 2012

'Please rise for the hymn'

And rise we did, for tonight we worshiped at the altar of Holy Mother Florence and the Reverend Machine. The lights dimmed, the stage was set and the opening notes of Only if For A Night twinkled out of the amps, infiltrating the (sold out) audience. And as Florence appeared, every jaw dropped in the room as she strode over to the microphone, swathed in a cape that seemed to have a life of it's own, adorned in a crystals and crushed velvet.
Florence Welch and her amazing cape.
Waiting for Florence and company to take the stage. Confronted  by a  rogue camera.

My sister has no patience. She too is waiting for the show to start. Also, those  are not her glasses

That voice. Oh my word. That perfect, rich voice rang throughout the arena, bewitching everyone that heard it. Not once did she falter. She might have lowered a note or two, running and jumping like some maniac posessed, but not once did it falter. It may have been the cold, but I felt the hairs on the back of my neck stand up at many times during the show.

From the dark (What the Water Gave Me) to the sublime (Cosmic Love), Florence breezed through the show, pausing only to give shout outs to fans who had sent presents and letters. Spectrum was played amongst a backdrop of disco balls and strobe lights- it reminded me of a comment I read somewhere online when Ceremonials had first come out, that Spectrum is the new age gay anthem. It fits to a tee, the anthemic mantra of 'say my name!/every colour illuminates' thrashed out to a sea of crazed fans dancing for their life.

And then there were life changers like 'the hymn' (You've Got The Love), Shake It Out and Dog Days are Over, where the audience felt like one, big happy family. Dancing, jumping up and down- it was admittedly hard not to.

Some random moments from the show include a 9 year old girl following Florence on stage and being overwhelming cute and full of chutzpah, a fight happening between drunk bogans in the row behind us during Heartlines and, happily, the distinct lack of cameras and phones in the audience.

The encore was a beautiful duality; the haunting Never Let Me Go and the thrilling No Light, No Light, bringing the show to a crashing crescendo, the drum beats pulsating through our bodies.

The changes between this new tour and Cosmic Love tour are evident; it's bigger, brighter and shinier but it's still Florence and the Machine. She was on fine form tonight, running all over the stage, incredibly chatty and livelier. I had my doubts about the move to a larger venue, I didn't think they could pull it off. So glad to say I'm wrong.

Art deco set.

Note the industrial sized fan, Mariah Carey could never.


Florence as a deity.

Strike a pose.

'God, grant me the ability to be a flawless ginger bitch'

9 year old Emily and her stage invasion post- Spectrum dance party. I take my hat off to her.

Lots of glowsticks in the crowd. Surprisingly



zacandthemachine said...

Hello! I was there on the night, and I also run the Florence & The Machine Australia Fan Club! Can you remember when she bought a book to the front of the stage, and thanked the fans who put it together? Well, that was me. There isn't a chance that you have a photo of her holding the book do you?
Ta! x

anniea said...

Hi Zac!

Apologies for the lateness of this reply. I absolutely do remember when Florence had the book with her, but I unfortunately don't have any photos of that moment. I know how special that moment is for you so I feel your pain! Well done on getting the book to her though!