REVIEW: One Direction, Capital FM Arena
THERE was screaming. Lots of high pitched screaming. But that's to be expected when the country's, possibly the world's, biggest boy band and thousands of their hardcore fans spend the night together in one very big room.
The fans, or Directioners as they're known, started queueing outside in the snow from the early morning, so by the time the boys came on stage just after 8.30pm, the anticipation had reached fever pitch.
After the uproar Justin Bieber caused on his recent visit to Nottingham, by turning up on stage an hour late, no doubt parents were preparing themselves for a long night. But with the professionalism expected from one of Simon Cowell’s acts, the 1D boys were not only prompt but they didn’t disappoint.
From the moment Harry, Niall, Zayn, Louis and Liam bounded on stage in their skinny jeans, the fivesome had energy and enthusiasm - making their loyal fans extra excitable.
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I'd always thought that foppish Harry Styles was the most popular member of the band but last night, according to the scream-o-meter, little Niall Horan from Ireland is actually the fan fave. He also became my favourite after greeting the crowd by saying "ay up me duck" in a particularly impressive Notts accent.
A highlight of the almost two-hour show was when part of the set came away and the boys floated over the crowd until they floated down to another stage in the middle. This gave the people at the back a chance to be closer to their idols while they sang their latest hit One Way (Teenage Kicks).
Another good moment was when the band interacted with the audience by reading out dares that members of the crowd had sent in via Twitter. These included singing Shaggy's It Wasn't Me and trying to do handstands - neither of which they did very well but it was funny to watch.
My main criticism would be that there wasn't any proper dancing in the show. Instead, 1D seemed to do a lot of fast walking from one end of the stage to the other and waving cutely at the crowd. While I applaud the audience interaction, I do like my boy bands to do a dance routine or two.
Part-way through the show it started to get a bit ballad heavy and samey, but this was saved by them singing Little Things and then ramping up the tempo with Live While We're Young.
They wisely decided to end on What Makes You Beautiful with big balloons bobbing through the crowd and confetti canons going off left, right and centre. This ensured that, if they hadn't been before, the whole audience (including chaperones) were on their feet dancing.