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Live: CHARLI XCX // First Avenue, Minneapolis, MN

Neon and glitter-clad fans packed First Avenue wall-to-wall last Friday night, the excitement palpable in anticipation of Charli XCX’s entrance.

Charli XCX - First Avenue Minneapolis - GIG GOER 2019

Out of the darkness, Charli’s voice greeted the crowd with an intro track that thanked those in attendance and everyone that contributed to her recent record Charli.

Charli XCX took the stage and jumped right into Next Level Charli, the first track off of Charli. Strobe lights and fog accompanied her entrance, her energy immediately commanding complete attention. The opening lyrics of Click quickly followed, the crowd shouting each line back to the singer. There was a power emanating from her throughout the set. Vroom Vroom off of 2016’s Vroom Vroom EP continued to build the energy in the crowd, and it became clear that Charli wasn’t about to slow down the set anytime soon.

The next portion of her performance celebrated the newest album, with Charli ripping through each phenomenal tune with ease. Charli saw the singer collaborate with a myriad of talented peers: Christine and the Queens, Sky Ferreira, Troye Sivan, Lizzo, and Haim, to name a few. Toward the middle of her set, Charli took the time to recognize National Coming Out Day. She addressed her crowd, “be whoever the f*ck you are…now let’s party.”

As a masterpiece of modern pop/dance music, Charli in a live setting hits you with an immense wall of sound. The live production is bass-heavy yet still allows for Charli’s voice to come across clearly in songs like Official. Her performance of White Mercedes was quite a highlight, as the music video had just dropped earlier that day. What makes Charli so amazing is that she still has genuine excitement and pride over the music she releases. She takes full responsibility for its impact and artistry, completely aware of her brand.

After her regular set Charli returned for the craziest encore I’ve ever seen, performing Unlock It, I Love It, Boys, and ending with 1999. As the crowd trickled out into the night, Charli’s energy lingered. This is one show I’ll be thinking about for a long time.

After finishing up her US tour with a handful of sold-out dates, Charli XCX takes her fabulous production to the UK/EU starting October 27th in Glasgow.

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Photos: Morgan Winston