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Alt-music fans relish back-to-back shows by The 1975

For Western New York’s own millennials, alternative music junkies, and fangirls and boys of all types, the exclamation "the British are coming!" has made a comeback this past May.

British, of course, referring to the English electropop band: The 1975.

And what’s better than a night of The 1975? Two nights. That’s right, the band took the LED-illuminated stage at a sold-out Niagara Fall’s Rapids Theatre on May 30 and 31.

Those who eagerly lined up as early as 11 a.m. on the 30th for the general admission show were more than ready to sing and swoon over the band.

Lead singer Matt Healy, however, was less than prepared for the show. Having been under the weather, the singer opted to use his voice in moderation. During the Tuesday night show, he omitted commentary with the audience but still used vocals on the songs.

In substitution, the fourth wall was broken down by groovy dance moves and sing-along crowd interaction.

The lack of dialogue was an unconventional aspect of the show; nonetheless Healy delivered a superb performance.

Due to his illness, the band called off a private acoustic session for 25 letdown fans and their guests. These local radio contest winners received an email with the news late Tuesday morning.

"They would rather preserve his voice to make sure their two shows at Rapids Theatre go perfectly," the email read.

These not-so-lucky winners were not compensated for the loss, however most still got their fix of The 1975 that night or the following.

Healy was more talkative during Wednesday’s show. Seemingly better, he apologized to the audience for the previous night’s disappointment.

Downstate New Yorkers were grateful for Healy’s vocal preservation in Buffalo, as The 1975 played a show at Madison Square Garden the following night.

Warming up the stage included bands Pale Waves and Colouring. The vibes of the opening bands were well received by the crowd. Both openers shared a similar genre of music as their headliner. At one point in Pale Waves’ set, the boy next to me leaned in and said "it sounds just like they put a female singer in The 1975. "

A nice choice by the booking agent, as this was the music the people came to hear.

Surprisingly, the music fell second to the lighting as the concerts’ most intriguing aspect.

Unlike any other visual experience, the iconic, rectangular panels stood perpendicular to the stage. The panels displayed the illusions of flowing waves, geometric shapes and city skyscrapers. Of course, all in the band’s signature neon haze.

The audience’s reaction reached a climax both nights during the song "Loving Someone." The ROY G BIV spectrum stretched along the base of the stage in it’s brightest hue. Almost appearing opaque, this rainbow wall gave a curtain illusion, which reaped a stunned reaction from the crowd. The lights are representative of the pride flag of the LGBTQ+ movement.

The 1975 delivered a show that was never before hosted by Buffalo. Judging by the overwhelming success of the two shows, it’s safe to say that they are welcome back anytime.

Julie Lillis is a junior at Mount St. Mary Academy.


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