CONCERT REVIEW : TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024

THE ERAS TOUR

 

The biggest tour in history comes to the biggest stadium in Scotland for the third of three nights. In excess of 210,000 people over three nights will play their part in making this, quite probably, the best musical show that anyone will ever have seen!

This was definitely a show and not a concert or gig… a show for the ages.

But let’s rewind a little; to several hours before the event. The local and international press had shown wall to wall coverage of the upcoming event with one of the national channels showing hour by hour programmes of the Taylor Swift machine taking over the nation.

Fans had started to queue on the Wednesday; the first show was on Friday! TV, radio and written press had been out and about interviewing ‘Swifties’ who had descended upon the capital city from such far flung places as Australia and the USA.

Friendship bracelets, cowboy hats, pink boas and sequins were very much in evidence and the Scottish weather had (mostly) played ball.

The first two shows earned nothing but huge praise and every superlative had been used over and over by everyone in attendance. Show 3 on Sunday 9th June gave Scottish Music Network the opportunity to see if the Tay Tay machine was all it had been billed to be.

As early as 2pm the tram from Edinburgh Airport into Murrayfield was packed with Swifties in hyper mood. The aforementioned sequins, cowboy boots and other Taylor Swift accoutrements adorning the fans was incredible… at each passing tram stop the bejazzled fans crammed into the carriages.

On arrival at Murrayfield stadium the tidal wave of Swifities became even more energised as the massive stadium and sea of glittering fans came into view.

The gates opened at 4pm and the charge of the Swiftie Brigade was on… who could get to the stage edge first… “Don’t Run’ was the forlorn cry of the stewards as energy charged teenagers turned into sequin clad olympic sprinters!

As you entered the stadium the first thing to hit you was the sheer scale… the size of the stadium, the size of the main stage and the massive walkway. To call it a walkway does it an injustice; it was massive and jutted out into a diamond shape about 50 metres from the main stage. As you turned your attention to the main stage you could only stand in awe at the size of the video screen… it was HUGE!!

Time to find your spot and try to keep cool in the unusual Scottish heat and to keep hydrated… there were plenty of opportunities to keep hydrated as water stations were dotted around the arena and mobile water stations seeking out those in need of water… a nice touch from the organisers.

At 6pm PARAMORE took to the stage to get everyone in the mood for Miss Swift. A huge act in their own right they absolutely killed it! Hayley Williams is a ball of perpetual motion as she commands the stage. Unlike a lot of support bands Paramore were given full use of the walkways and stage and they used it to their full advantage.

Hayley is always very talkative on stage but she seemed completely blown away with the reception they’d been given and how the fans knew the words to the songs. The majority of the already large crowd sang and shouted the words back to the band and Hayley, in her Scotland beanie, repaid with the largest smile.

Paramore even managed time to showcase an alternative rendition of Blondies ‘Heart of Glass’ and a stomping version of Talking Heads ‘Burning Down the House’… absolutely magnificent!

They left the stage to huge acclaim and had well and truly warmed up the audience (as if the now hyper crowd needed warmed up!)

The clock seemed to slow down as the now deafening crowd impatiently waited for the main act.

Then a countdown clock appeared on the main screen and the decibel level was now off the scale.. it became painful at times.

The main screen parted and colourfully flamboyant dancers started to parade down the walkway until they reached the spot where the fans already knew Taylor was going to make her dramatic entrance and then… utter ear splitting screams!

Taylor Swift had entered the building to a noise level I’d wager had never been heard at any live show ever… it became apparent why some seasoned Swifities had donned ear protectors for the opening song.

The show had begun and what unfolded over the next 3 and a half hours was mesmerising. Yes, you read that right… 3 and a half hours!!! In the current climate of inflated ticket prices this was very good value for money.

The biggest tour of all time – the first ever tour to gross £1billion dollars and predicted to smash through the £2billion dollars barrier – was supersized and supercharged as the Scottish fans sang, shouted and screamed themselves hoarse.

Everyone in the civilised knows the songs and the person behind them so it serves no purpose to list them (all 45 of them) but there were some moments worthy of a mention.

Firstly, when the fans entered they were each given a Taylor Swift wristband. A simple looking white wristband with a little plastic light on it. On first inspection to the uninitiated it was simply that… a nice wee memento.

However, and it’s a big however… Each band was somehow activated by some sort of wizardry or witchcraft so that it flashed certain colours in sync with the colours on the screen. Not just plain flashing; some flashed whilst others didn’t and it produced waves of colour around the stadium!

  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024
  • TAYLOR SWIFT Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland Sunday 9th June 2024

There were cannons that shot flames into the air and confetti cannons; there were screens, screens and more screens; even the walkway was a screen! There were props appearing from hidden stage doors and there were rapid costume changes. Dancers galore, backing singers and a very tight band.

Taylor was competing to be heard over a 73,000 strong choir and it was a fight that she didn’t always win as the crowd had been whipped into a frenzy akin to that of Beatles mania… it was an incredible noise. Taylor had to stop on a number of occasions to soak it all in and, perhaps, she realised the folly of trying to compete.

As darkness descended upon Edinburgh the sheer size and complexity of the whole stage setup became more obvious. No expense had been spared when designing the spectacle and the sight of the flashing wrist bands was incredible as they danced in time around the crowd… witchcraft I tell thee!

There was a now expected touching moment when Taylor took her dancing entourage to the end of the walkway and picked out a child in the crowd. The child appeared on the big screen and her amazement and excitement was there for all 73,000 to see.

Taylor took off her hat and gave it to the wee girl who could be seen to shout ‘Thank you so much’ back at miss Swift.

At the conclusion of the show it became apparent that hundreds of fan without tickets had gathered outside to listen to the hero in what looked like a vigil… it truly was a bizarre sight as fans sat in groups with small T lights burning and huddled together to keep warm against the now typical Scottish summer weather.

All in all this was a spectacle that all in attendance will never forget (including a grizzled cynical old reviewer) and the promise from Tay Tay that she’ll definitely return to Scotland; maybe not bigger and better but definitely returning. This proclamation, obviously, met with unimaginably loud screams of delight!

Scottish Music Network managed to grab a few fan reactions…

Sarah from Manchester – “OMG, OMG, OMG this is amazing. I only got my ticket yesterday so I’m buzzing!”

Tyler (but prefers to be called Taylor) from New York – “This is a dream come true. My ancestors were Scottish and Tay Tay is the best in the world. I love Scotland!”

 Scottish Music Network doesn’t usually mark events out of ten but on this occasion we’ll let Emily from Scotland have the last word…

Emily – “I give Taylor 100 out of 10!”

 

We were informed that Emily is Taylor’s biggest fan and with a mark of 100 out of 10 who are we to argue?

 

Review and Crowd Photography by John Brown 

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