Weekender: Latour shows Paradise Rock Club passion, love and gratitude

Maude Latour sings to fans at Paradise Rock Club on Sept 29. Madeleine Aitken / The Tufts Daily
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Maude Latour’s song “Cyclone” (2022) ends with an overlapping chorus of the line “You know me well.” It felt like no mistake that that was the song she started her show at Paradise Rock Club with; by the time she got to the end of the track, she was singing those lyrics with immense passion, like she really meant it. 

And for good reason. Her audience does know her well; something about her feels more like a friend than a star. Maybe it’s how she started making music: as a side hobby alongside her philosophy studies at Columbia, when she released music videos on YouTube that featured her and her friends in their dorm or on the Columbia campus. Maybe it’s her social media presence. She shares personal anecdotes, relatable sentiments, and vulnerable feelings on her Instagram story as if it’s a “close friends” story, even though she has over 56,000 followers. (After the show in Boston, she posted “and this tour. i cried for the past hour. beyond, surreal, that room. you guys. this is so beautiful. i am so in awe and i cant believe how you know every word. i am so beyond grateful to grow with you.”) 

Latour’s fan base has grown recently, especially after she started focusing on music full time this summer following her graduation from Columbia University. She now boasts over 1.3 million monthly listeners on Spotify. The Boston show, the first night of a tour that features stops in Philadelphia, Atlanta, Houston, Los Angeles and San Francisco, among others, plus All Things Go and Austin City Limits, was sold out. But even as she becomes a true rising pop star, she hasn’t lost this personal quality with her fans, and that felt completely true at her show at Paradise Rock Club on Sept. 29. Latour’s gratitude for her fans was palpable from the stage, and their love for her reverberated right back. 

There wasn’t a person in the audience that didn’t know every word to Latour’s songs, and she referenced the loyalty of her fans several times throughout the night. After bursting out to “Cyclone,” she transitioned right into “Walk Backwards” (2021). “Cyclone” was arguably an interesting first song, because it’s Latour’s newest release from just a few weeks ago on Sept. 2. But no matter for the audience, who jumped right in with her, dancing and singing along.

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The energy was high right from the beginning, especially because Latour barely took a breath between “Cyclone,” “Walk Backwards,” and “Strangers Forever.” “Strangers Forever” is one of the few songs in Latour’s discography that wasn’t released as a single, but rather as the title track of her second EP, released in 2021, that featured five other songs, all pre-released singles. It was a favorite at the show, especially after Latour left the stage to come down to the floor and lean over the guardrail, grabbing fans’ hands and inciting a noticeable energy in the room. 

“Headphones” (2022) was next, followed by Latour exclaiming “I’m hot!” and throwing off her sweatshirt to reveal a black triangular bra and mesh rhinestone crop top, which the crowd went wild for. She launched into “Ride My Bike” (2019) and jumped off the stage to run down the guardrail high-fiving hands. 

 

Following “Ride My Bike,” it felt like the first time Latour really stopped to breathe. She reminded fans that her new EP “001” (2022) was dropping at midnight, though it didn’t seem like this was news to anyone in the crowd. She asked if we were “ready to come on a journey with her” and then sang the title track “001,” which Latour had only previously teased on TikTok and wouldn’t be released on Spotify for another couple hours.

The crowd listened dutifully, swaying along with Latour as she sang “001,” a song that is a departure from much of the rest of her discography, but one that she described to V Magazine as “so my voice, my personality, and my message.” 

Latour got the crowd hyped up again by asking “We’re done dating bad guys, right?” Everyone cheered, knowing she was moving into “Superfruit,” from her first EP “Starsick” (2019), which features the lyrics, “I’ve dated bad guys, not really sure why / Now I know that they were all such a waste of time.”

She then took a beat to introduce her band, a drummer and a bass guitarist/backup vocalist. She also thanked her opener, Maggie Miles, an alternative pop artist from Nashville, before singing “Plans,” another track from her first EP, in a softer, more heartfelt tone that quieted the crowd down. She took a minute to talk to the crowd, saying “for this tour, I’m trying to just chat.” She showed off her bejeweled water bottle and said that after she and her team left New York to head to Boston, she realized she had forgotten it and made the car turn around to go back for it. 

She introduced her next song by asking the crowd to repeat after her: “Keep my girls protected,” the first line of the chorus of “Lola” (2022). After the call and response, Latour paused to dedicate the song to queer people, trans people and the right to choose, and then launched into singing. 

Engaging more with the audience, she split the audience in half and created a kind of two-part harmony for one of the lyrics of her song “Trees,” before beginning to sing.  

She sang the other new song from her EP, “Living It,” (the rest of the EP is pre-released singles, including “Trees” and “Lola”). The room went quiet for the slower, more thoughtful song — it evokes a Soccer Mommy-like sound — and phone flashlights came on and waved around the room. 

Latour then went onto “Probabilities” (2022) before throwing on some fun star-shaped sunglasses and asking if everyone liked her new songs. “I was being so vulnerable,” she said, but of course she was reassured that everyone liked them.

She again returned to her roots with “Shoot and Run” and “Starsick,” both from her first EP. “Shoot and Run” was the first song she put out, and she jokingly asked the room “What was I going through at age 17?” and said “Starsick” was “for her day ones.”

Latour took her shirt off and danced around with renewed energy for the last song of her set, “One More Weekend” (2020), which is by far her most popular song according to Spotify streams — over 31 million on that one (her next most streamed song is “Furniture” (2021) with 7.6 million streams) — before exuberantly thanking the crowd and running off the stage.

But fans weren’t going to let her go that easily. Almost immediately, chants of “encore, encore, encore” filled the room. The band came back and started playing first before Latour ran out with a huge grin to sing “Furniture” and “Block Your Number” (2020), which both inspired great excitement from the crowd and ended the show on the same kind of note it started on: extremely high energy with fans singing every word and Latour clearly reveling in the magic of seeing her music bring people together in real time. 

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