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May 6, 2016

LIGHTS Midnight Machines Tour Review

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Written by: CT
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lights midnight

By: Kelsey Cueva

To kick off Canadian Music Week, Lights took the stage at The Danforth Music Hall, making Toronto the first stop on her Midnight Machines Tour. The all-acoustic performance featured songs from her latest EP, Midnight Machines, as well as dreamy renditions of her older hits. Quaint and cozy, The Music Hall’s intimate setting served as the perfect venue for the songstress’ soothing set, leaving fans practically melting in their seats!

(Photo credit: @princedcf) Lights with show-opener, DCF. How cute!

To open the show, up-and-coming Toronto based artist, DCF (David Charles Fischer), started the night off with an all-acoustic set of his own. While known for his moody lyrics and flavoured hip-hop tracks, the neo-pop Prince sang stripped down versions of his singles, including the track “One Time” from his highly anticipated album High School Forever. He also surprised the audience with his own renditions of Justin Bieber’s “Love Yourself”, and a mashup of Drake’s “Hold On, We’re Going Home” and “One Dance”, saying that he enjoys performing covers because in between writing and recording his own tracks, he doesn’t often have the chance to do so. The audience swayed in their seats as they swooned over Fischer’s smooth guitar and delicate fingerpicking. He really set the mood and tone for the rest of the night to follow. After his performance, DCF shared how amazing it’s been to have the opportunity to open for Lights, as he’s been a fan of her’s since her “MySpace days”. He humbly thanked his fans for all their support before finally closing his set for the night.

You can listen to DCF’s SoundCloud here.

The mellow vibes from DCF’s performance carried over into intermission, leaving the audience in awe as they waited for the woman of the hour. You could hear the speculation from all corners of The Music Hall – I am in love with the new album! Have you listened to it? My favourite song is… Do you think she’ll play some of her older stuff? Oh man, I hope so! But as soon as Lights stepped onto the stage, the lull of the crowd had broken. With her guitar in one hand and a glass of white wine in the other, she pulled up a stool and opened the show with a blast from the past, “River”, from her first studio album, The Listening.

As someone who’s been a fan of Lights since the eighth grade, it’s amazing to see how much she has grown as an artist. While I can live and die by the fact that she can rock a gnarly synth, it’s always so refreshing to hear Lights unplugged – just a girl and her guitar. That’s why after watching her perform, I was overcome by this sudden wave of nostalgia, remembering what it was like hearing her music for the first time. It felt almost as if her music had grown up with her day one fans, maturing over time.

Lights poured her heart out on stage, singing one acoustic remake after the other. Accompanied by her backup band and a string trio, tracks like “Same Sea”, “Suspension”, and “Don’t Go Home Without Me” were completely transformed, giving her songs a fuller and richer sound.

Before singing “Running With the Boys”, she shared,

“When writing Midnight Machines, it just felt so unfair because… we didn’t really have to try! And that’s not blowing smoke up anybody’s ass or anything, we just had so much fun. [My band and I] had been playing these songs for a long time now, and we just sat down… and let it happen.”

Lights beamed on stage, and with each passing song you could see that she was really in her element. She showed Toronto lots of love, sharing how reminiscent she felt performing in the city in which she was able to develop as an artist and wrote the majority of her music.

Lights and the crowd were feeding off of each other’s energy. She took the time to read aloud a few fan-made signs, and when a fan in the crowd asked the singer if she would design her a tattoo, she promised that as soon as she is good enough to tattoo something that’s not an orange peel, she would personally tatoo the fan herself!

She closed her show with crowd favourite, “Banner”, after taking the time to thank her fans for all the love and support; only to return shortly after for a hauntingly beautiful encore performance of “Muscle Memory”. With her drink at hand, Lights and her fans swayed the night away. The concert was surely one to remember.

Watch the music video for “Meteorites”, the first official single off of Midnight Machines!

And be sure to check out her remaining tour dates here.






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