Live Review: Niall Horan at the Royal Albert Hall

Niall Horan – former member of One Direction – triumphed over any music artist at the moment after holding a 60-minute heartfelt concert in the famous Royal Albert Hall, London to raise money for charity We Need Crew…

Due to lockdown, many of us music fans are sadly missing out on concerts and dearly miss a time where we can see some of our favourite music artists and soak in the atmosphere surrounding us as fans – just like you – sing along to some of your favourite tracks.

However, Niall Horan took matters into his own hands and produced the next best thing, a live-streamed concert for all to enjoy across the world. As well as this, he held this concert to raise money for We Need Crew – a charity raising money for live music touring crews who are not able to work at the moment and earn money due to the lack of support from the furlough scheme and not being able to tour at the moment.

Horan performed a mix of hits from his first and second album, the majority from his second album Heartbreak Weather as he was due to perform them in up and coming concerts – cancelled due to the pandemic.

Some stand out performances of the night included: Still, Moral of the Story (featuring Ashe), Cross Your Mind, Small Talk and Nice to Meet Ya. All tracks varied a range of tones that made me want to reach for a tissue to dab my tears away, yet others that led to a rockier and upbeat tone.

Although it is not my favourite song on the album, Still was the most prominent performance of the night for me. Not only was it Niall’s beautiful vocals that always seem to put me under a spell, but it was the camera work that made the performance more enticing to view. In the final moments of the song when Niall sings: “Well I’m still in love with you”, a close up of Horan shows the pure emotion he feels towards not only this song, but in that lyric. For me, it created that connection with him I could only feel at a concert – one where you could be face to face.

What made this concert an even greater viewing was the fact Horan brought both the emotional intensity and the exhilarating excitement of his other songs. Once again, Small Talk – an accompanying track from the Heartbreak Weather album – is not one of my preferred tracks, but the performance on the night was one of the best. The edgier atmosphere I spoke about earlier came from the performance of this song. The electric guitar intro made that smooth shift in tone to pick up the more sorrowful atmosphere – after performing the more low-key songs.

Seeing Horan perform his songs from his second album was a joy in itself. What made it even more pleasurable was how grateful Niall was to be performing again. Concerts to musicians are like matches for footballers, or a school for a teacher – it is natural to them. For someone to not do something natural to them, it doesn’t feel right. Niall Horan is one of these many artists that cannot do what doesn’t comes naturally to them, and the fact he could do this once again is clear throughout the hour-long performance.

Perhaps if I am going to be intricate in terms of criticism, it is the fact the concert couldn’t last longer than an hour. This was only for the fact the performance was a glimpse back into reality and such an entertaining viewing, I didn’t want it to end.

Ultimately, the streamed concert held by Horan was something not to be missed out on (and that is not me being bias) as it was invigorating to see tracks performed from the Heartbreak Weather album.

However, it was additionally a more meaningful performance by the fact Niall was grateful to be performing once again and it was done in order to raise money for the We Need Crew charity – raising money and promoting those behind the scenes that have been forgotten in this pandemic.

By Katie Green

Feature Image Credit: Royal Albert Hall

The whole live stream can be viewed here

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