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Harry Styles, ever the showman

Wening Gitomartoyo
Wening Gitomartoyo

The Jakarta Post

Singapore  /  Mon, May 7, 2018  /  08:15 pm
Harry Styles, ever the showman

Harry Styles live in concert in Singapore on Thursday, May 3. (Courtesy of/Cesara Roesselin)

A rainbow flag, dad jokes, prancing around and an all-around enjoyable show: the trademark of Harry Styles at One Direction concerts are also apparent on his solo tours.

Returning for his second show in Singapore on Thursday at the Indoor Stadium, after a smaller concert at the Star Theatre in November 2017, the 24-year-old singer is on a world tour that will end in July.

After One Direction went on hiatus in 2016 following its fifth album Made in the A.M., each member has released singles and solo albums. Two preferred the popular R&B course, while the other two embarked on a path of pop, folk and classic rock.

During his days in One Direction, Styles’ taste in music was known to differ from his bandmates, opting for Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd and Queen. In an interview last year, he said while making the album he listened to a lot of Harry Nilsson.    

Such influences are noticeable in his songs. In particular Styles hung on to strong melodies that leave a lasting mark on his listeners. That is perhaps his best achievement, penning songs that are not limited to a period of time, making them timeless.

Upbeat classic rock-tinted songs, such as “Kiwi” or “Only Angel”, the moody, slightly psychedelic “Meet Me in the Hallway” or the ’80s “Ever Since New York” are full of those qualities.

On stage, he delivered them with both swagger and sincerity. His voice flawlessly switched between warm, melancholic and rowdy. The charisma and star quality he naturally exuded would make you believe that he was born to perform.

Opened by Warpaint with their intense set, Styles seemed a bit distant in the first few songs. He eventually became the entertainer his fans have come to know and love.

Read also: One Direction's Harry Styles says he enjoys going it alone

With only 10 songs on his debut solo self-titled album, Styles added a few of his unreleased singles and three from One Direction to the setlist. The electro-pop “Stockholm Syndrome” and the poppy “What Makes You Beautiful” were edgy and rockier, with Styles’ vocals more often on the lower register.

The singer performed One Direction songs, the boyband that made him popular.The singer performed One Direction songs, the boyband that made him popular. (Courtesy of/Cesara Roesselin)

Like the concert back in November, he also did a cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain” and sang “Just A Little Bit of Your Heart”, a pop song he wrote for singer Ariana Grande.

He had a way with words, saying thank you to the audience as the number one on his list.

“If none of you came, I would just be taking a holiday and prancing around on stage. So, thank you,” he said with a hand on his chest, to erupting cheers.  

“I have one job, and that is to entertain you,” Styles told the crowd. “Your job this evening is to have the absolute time of your life. Feel free to be who you want to be in this room tonight.”

Always performing with flair and earnest joy, Harry Styles was a delight to see. And obviously feeling free to be who he wanted to be that night, he made the music he wanted to. It is exciting to think of what more is in store for him.

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