Following the disappointing (but inevitable) news that her upcoming Lover Fest tour is postponed, Taylor Swift has delighted fans with the release of her City of Lover concert special. Used to sold-out stadiums, Swifties from across the world united in Paris to experience a rare intimate performance at the L’Olympia Theatre last September.
It’s not clear whether the plan was to release the footage all along or if this is to make up for the cancelled tour dates. This summer would have seen Taylor visit many European cities that she’s never played before and currently, only the US and Brazil dates have been rescheduled. Either way, fans are super excited to be treated to a virtual front-row seat at the show.
The one-hour special feels almost like an album release party as it sees Taylor perform many songs live for the first time. The original setlist featured a whopping fifteen songs, which has been condensed down to eight – all of which are from Lover. While it means that fan favourites like ‘All Too Well’ were unfortunately cut, her battle to regain her masters is still ongoing and Swifties 100% support her.
Taylor is absolutely glowing on stage throughout and we see her in her element when it comes to the stripped down acoustic set. “I’d really like to play some of these songs for the first time,” she announces, “and I was thinking maybe the best way to do it would be to play them acoustic, the way that I wrote them.” Armed with just a guitar, she debuts a trio of new songs (Death by A Thousand Cuts, Cornelia Street, The Man) and has the entire audience captivated.
Despite being new, the crowd knows every single word and enthusiastically sing it back to her. We’re reminded of how truly authentic Taylor is as she tells the story of writing ‘Cornelia Street’ while she was in a bath tub – it’s one of three songs from the album that were written completely solo with no co-writers.
A lot of the time I’ll write songs about nostalgia and memories. I use songs almost like photographs so I can go back and remember exactly what it was like to experience it.
Alongside the new songs, she also plays plenty of hits for the more casual fans including ‘ME!’ and ‘You Need to Calm Down’. (We’re sooo not calm rn.) It also includes never seen before footage of Taylor warming up in her dressing room and exclusive backstage photos.
We had an absolutely blast watching it and it turns out quite a lot of people did, as Lover re-entered the top five on US iTunes following the broadcast. All the live performances are also available to stream on Spotify and YouTube, so we can jam to them in our own time.
Taylor Swift’s City of Lover is out now for a limited time on Disney+ and Hulu.