Sky Ferreira Has ArrivedNovember 12th, 2013
Sky Ferreira – Webster Hall – November 11, 2013
Sky Ferreira had been waiting a long time for last night. Her management’s and record label’s indecisiveness over how to break the new “It Girl” into the music world had led to false starts and an introduction that has been anything but smooth. The grooming of Ferreira, only 21, has taken shape, and been reshaped, for years. Finally fed up this past summer, she decided to finish her awfully long-awaited debut album on her own. Last night at Webster Hall marked the first New York City performance since the album’s release in late October, and in the media capital of the world, anticipation was high.
The well-received record, Night Time, My Time, is a shot in the arm to the current state of pop music—a bold and sexy work combining indie-rock influences with the pulse of ’80s-era guitar pop into a sparkling collection that is very much her own. The question was: Could she deliver a performance that lived up to the quality of her debut and all the hype that preceded it? A big crowd at Webster Hall packed in to hear the answer. Adding to the anticipation has been the media-driven turmoil over an arrest and her recent vocal-health concerns. Commotion in the world of entertainment, especially music, stirs intrigue. People are drawn to high-stakes situations where the spotlight is a hot light, and increased scrutiny places extra pressure on a performer to hold composure and deliver.
But in an impressively calm yet poised display, Ferreira dazzled. Practically from the start, her fan base buzzed, singing along in perfect sync, prompting the singer-songwriter on many occasions to extend her microphone to them. By the third song, the quickly ascending hit “24 Hours,” she had the entire room eating out of the palm of her hand. And while the show was not without flaws, Ferreira was so engaging that no one cared, and by the time the irresistibly danceable “You’re Not the One” bolted from her still-healing vocal chords, euphoria filled the room. Sky Ferreira has arrived, and she’s not bashful about it. Her NYC debut on the heels of her new album was nothing short of thrilling, and by show’s end, you could tell the cathartic buildup from years of speculation about her talent and belonging in the contemporary music scene finally found a release. At the end, Ferreira wiped away tears of happiness and relief, thanking everyone for their emphatic support. —Charles Steinberg