October saw Danish singer-songwriter MØ bring a freshness to Leeds University Stylus with a premiere of her soon-to-be-released second album.
Ascending the stage amid cheers from the audience and a majestic flashing “MØ” sign as a stage backdrop, the electro-pop wizard launches into the perfect opener ‘Don’t Wanna Dance’ with an explosion of fervent energy. From the get-go, MØ sets the tone for the rest of the night, plunging from her banging opener right into ‘Waste of Time’, an upbeat dance track that continues to have the audience screaming, singing along, and stomping their feet.
After playing a couple old favourites (‘Kamikaze’, ‘Slow Love’), MØ finally addresses the audience and reveals that we are in for a little treat – a series of unreleased new tracks that “even the internet has yet to see”. The crowd whoops and cheers as a smattering of spidery lights dramatically make their way across the stage and throughout the dance floor. There’s almost a sense of fervid urgency as she leaps from song to song with hardly a breath in between, but MØ impressively manages to stay in tune throughout her dance-heavy performance. Her new songs range from twangy electric-guitar ballads (‘Fire Rides’) to bass-laden dance tracks (‘Walk This Way’) and liquid indie pop numbers (‘Dust is Gone’) that emphasise her spellbinding vocals. It’s a notably happier sound than her first album No Mythologies to Follow – a positivity MØ describes in an interview with DIY Magazine as an “oh, the world is shit, but we’re gonna have a good time anyway” attitude.
Always one to leave a firm impression on her audience, MØ is full of quirky antics – one moment she sings lying flat on the ground, and with the next she jumps right into the crowd. Small in frame, she would disappear completely if not for the multitude of raised phones that trail her as she makes her way through yelping selfie-snapping fans. Whipping her hair in time to a barrage of rapidly flashing strobes, MØ takes the stage once again, and in no time gets the crowd roaring to soon-to-be pop hit ‘True Romance’ amongst others (‘Glass’, ‘On & On’). After performing her smash hit ‘Final Song’ with the entire venue singing along in accompaniment and a multitude of shoulder rides littering the audience, MØ cheekily (and ironically, given the song’s lyrics) saunters off-stage, only to be (as one would expect) impatiently cajoled back by a screaming and stomping audience.
Closing the show with ‘Lean On’, the banger that parachuted her to fame, the 19-song-long concert ends on a high, with everyone singing and dancing. If there’s one thing to be said about MØ live, it’s that she absolutely wrangles all pansy alt-pop expectations to the ground with her massive vocals, and doubtlessly delivers the blast of a night she promises.
(photo credits: Julian Basel)
Published in Circulation Magazine October 12, 2016.