Florence And The Machine captivates Belfast audience

Florence and the Machine pictured live tonight in Belfast at the SSE Arena. Picture by Hugh Russell
Emma Gallen

The SSE arena opened its doors only last week and saw its first sell-out (or very close to) gig with Florence And The Machine.

Kicking off the first night of their tour, Florence And The Machine had a beautifully sparkly set which created a ripple look when the light hit it.

This matched the opening number What The Water Gave Me.

Shake It Off had the whole arena on their feet and even the first song of the new album How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful had the crowd standing and singing along.

Lead singer Florence Welch had boundless energy, running from one side of the stage to the other and spinning round in circles like she was the cog in this machine.

The sparkly backdrop served to create a moonlight and a sunlight glow. It was quite enchanting.

Welch's vocals are superb and with her bell sleeves she is easily compared to Kate Bush - both ethereal, a bit eccentric but with brilliant lyrics flawlessly sang.

Florence said the new album is a sort of odyssey so it was appropriate to play in the Odyssey. I don't think she was briefed on the name change.

It's easy to see why Florence And The Machine were asked to headline Glastonbury as they captivated the audience with beautiful harmonies and made everyone want to dance with their up-tempo soft rock.

What makes the SSE different from the Odyssey?

The staff wore lime green rather than lemon (keeping with the citrus theme though so as not to confuse anyone too much) and the pre-pay parking costs 30p more.

The actual arena is much the same though with the only notable difference being how bright the screens are in the boxes for fancy people.

Sitting in the regular sitting, when the lights were down, the flashing of ads were a distraction.

Support for Florence came from English trio The Staves.

The young women had beautiful harmonies that made the arena quieten down to listen.

The venue seemed a bit wrong for their bare acoustic set but if they come back and play a smaller more intimate venue they would be worth checking out.





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