I arrived to The Powerstation about 20 minutes before the first act was due to take the stage and the line went down the road as the crowd continued to flow in. It has been quite a while since I’ve seen a line be that big at doors opening. The crowd had really packing in, both upstairs and downstairs.
First act to take the stage was B Keys. He dove in straight away, pacing the stage throughout his set to ensure he gave the whole crowd his attention. B Keys gave a clean delivery in all his tracks and got the crowd to vibe with him, whether it was answering questions or clapping along. But to help get the crowd hype for Jon Bellion he asked them all who was “a Day 1 Jon Bellion fan” and made a challenge of male vs female. Each had to sing-a-long to an older track of Jon’s but I definitely have to say the females won because they managed to sing-a-long at a similar volume to the guys but to an older track. I think the crowd really got into his set.
The crowd’s energy was really building at this point and they just didn’t want to stop, so they didn’t. Next up was Travis Mendes. Travis came flying onto the stage and got straight into it. However there was an issue with the lighting at the start, where it didn’t come on for a minute or two. Though the lighting had it’s moments, the sound was great throughout the night. But Travis handled it like a pro and just kept going until they came on and the crowd followed suit. Travis let everyone know it was going to be a special night because not only was it there first time here, it also happened to fall 1 day after the 1 year anniversary of Glory Sound Prep. But the crowd was there to give these guys love as well as Jon and Travis realised that, you could not take the smile off his face. He almost seemed shock by it. Travis had a lot of energy as he ran back and forth across the stage. But when it was time for the 4th song ‘Think It Over’, Travis decided to surprise everyone and bust out the guitar. But to assist him, he brought out friend, Jonathan Asperil. I couldn’t fault Travis’ vocals. His soulful melodies came through so well and didn’t seem to falter. Though I think a beautiful moment that not only showed the crowd, but his connection with them was when he got them to all put their lights up for ‘Dead Presidents’. Travis could not shake his smile and it was so nice to see. It got to the point where Travis gave a bit of an emotional speech on how he didn’t think he’d be performing to people in NZ. But then to break the “sad part” he used his last track to get the crowd hyped for Jon and informed the crowd he’d be back out with Jon so it wasn’t the end of him yet.
At this point the crowd was just on another level. The floor was severely packed and buzzing. So when the lights went out, the crowd went off! The band took the stage, the intro began to play and Jon Bellion took the stage. He had such high energy and like Travis, he couldn’t take the smile off his face. This crowd seemed to be a surprise to them all. Though Jon was nearly in tears and honestly you just felt so happy for him. He has worked for this and really deserved it.
I had heard a lot about Jon’s shows so was quite excited to see what he brings to NZ. But within the first couple of songs Jon was acknowledging his band and he continued to get the crowd to show them love throughout the night. It was really awesome to see him do that. The 5th song of the set was ‘Blu’ and Jon made sure to acknowledge and dedicate it to his friend Busbee who had worked on music with him as well as a range of other artists (FUCK CANCER!). He also asked the crowd to put one hand in the air for him. It was a beautiful moment.
Jon had really flawless vocals throughout the performance and I really couldn’t fault it. He hit high notes effortlessly. But he was really feeling it and the band was too. I loved seeing Jon’s passion whether it was they way he himself moved to the music (and he has moves!) or his facials. The energy from them and the crowd was electrifying and you couldn’t help but just feel good. There were so many fun moments in the show from the band intro/challenge where they had to play what Jon told and how he wanted it, like a conductor, to the impromptu Haka-turned-hype-track at the end of the show.
But the crowd couldn’t let him go because they did the loudest “We want Jon!” chant I have possibly ever heard. “You have no idea how blessed we are to come here. Thank you so much! Hands to the sky!”. Jon did a 2-song encore which is where the Haka moment came in, however I think he ended his set perfectly with the crowd singing along with him to ‘Good Things Fall Apart’.
It really is hard to write about this show because honestly it was just a great show, with an awesome crowd, full of a lot of fun and positive energy. I hope the videos and photos can show you that.
Definitely one of my top shows in 2019!
- Let’s Begin
- Conversations With My Wife
- Couples Retreat
- The Internet
- All Time Low
- Take This
- Stupid Deep
- Cautionary Tales
- Woke the F*ck Up
- Good Things Fall Apart (Illenium cover)
- 10 Years
- No More
- Do Over
- Think It Over
- Don’t Tempt Me
- Dead Presidents
- How Close
- The Light
- Acapella Moment
- Never Change
- JB Medley