Icelandic singer-songwriter Laufey made the Dallas stop of her Bewitched tour on Nov. 11, singing infectious jazz tunes in a coquettish cowboy hat adorned with red bows.
Laufey began her career with her 2021 “Typical of Me” EP, which shared her tendency to romanticize her mundane life for better or for worse. Her relatability and sweet, delicate charm has transferred to her newest “Bewitched” album, and it is clear that her fans feel a deep kinship with the artist, as seen from the amount of crowd interaction and gifts tossed onstage.
Adam Melchor opened the concert with a touching cover of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” played songs from his latest EP “BIGTIMEGOODTIME” and closed with his most popular songs “Joyride” and “Real Estate.” Melchor’s lyrics pulled listeners into a coming-of-age film, and along with his charmingly boyish demeanor, earned him the crowd’s full attention, with some concertgoers quickly scanning their Spotify for his artist profile.
While fans of Melchor were sad to see him go, he later joined Laufey to sing backup vocals and play guitar. Melchor took his time explaining the origins of his songs to fans, earning many chuckles from the audience, and even stayed after the concert to help run his merch table and chat with fans. Despite the long line that formed, he happily took selfies and had lengthy conversations with almost every fan who stopped by.
As Laufey entered the stage with a small band, the first thing that stood out was her personal style. She was a European Pinterest style board come to life, in a billowing white blouse, a pleated miniskirt and a vest given to her by a fan earlier that day. Judging from the aesthetic of the audience, her fans are deeply inspired by her fashion as many wore Victorian blouses, miniskirts with coquette ribbons dangling from their hair, tights, shirts and anything else imaginable..
The ambiance that Laufey set as she floated on stage was like that of a symphony. Excitement bubbled in the air, but the grace the artist exuded caused the audience to have a politeness rarely seen at concerts. That’s not to say the crowd didn’t sing along to every song, throwing words of admiration at Laufey, but it was refreshing to see a gentle crowd that didn’t overpower the artist. The first song on her setlist, “Fragile,” expresses her demeanor perfectly. The sensitive songwriting that hammered away at every listener’s inner hopeless romantic combined with her gentle guitar playing resulted in a wonderful stillness.
Continuing on with a fan favorite, “Valentine,” Laufey touched on her commitment issues, which most Gen Z listeners can heavily relate to. Her melodic voice rang as she sang, “What if he’s the last one I kiss/What if he’s the only one I’ll ever miss?” She is the voice for the new generation of uncertain young adults, and her relatability combined with her poetic descriptions of love make this era of dating seem less dire.
While many of her songs have a gentler vibe with a slow tempo, she picked up the pace with “Dreamer,” a jazzy song that expresses that despite a dreary dating scene, Laufey will not compromise her romantic outlook on life. As she wears a dreamy cowboy hat slathered with delicate red bows, she sings “Oh, I’m givin’ up/I’m throwing in the hat/I can’t take another lifeless chat/I’m moving up into a cloud, into my fantasy.” Another song with a faster beat, “Lovesick,” created the most memorable atmosphere of the night, describing the uncertainty and exhilaration of a car ride with someone you know you shouldn’t be with. As she sang “When the gold rays fell on your skin and my hair got caught in the wind/The choir sang a melancholic hymn,” the venue erupted in warm honeyed lighting, and the audience was transported out of the chilly dark venue and into a scene from a heartfelt romance film.
Laufey constantly brings her listeners on a journey through her own life while getting them to appreciate the complexities of love. As she closed out her concert, graciously thanking her fans as she found out about her first-time Grammy nomination in Texas, an almost peaceful melancholy coated the room, and while fans were saddened to see the queen of modern jazz leave, no one could deny that Laufey provided a “Bewitching” night.