Niall Horan brings ‘The Show’ to the Xfinity Center




Music

“I feel like I’m playing in Dublin, this is crazy.”

marcen27 / Wikimedia Commons

Following up two sold-out shows at Madison Square Garden is a daunting task, but the crowd at Xfinity Center delivered for Niall Horan’s performance at the Xfinity Center Saturday night.

The former One Direction star took to the Mansfield stage as part of his tour, “The Show: Live on Tour.” This is his first headlining tour since 2018, following the ill-fated “Nice to Meet Ya Tour” in 2020. 

For a tour lasting ten months, it could understandably be hard for an artist to connect with the city they’re visiting, but at Horan’s concert, the connection with Boston was evident early on.

Indie artist Del Water Gap got the crowd up on their feet during his opening set. Del Water Gap explained his love for Boston, saying he’s performed at various venues across the area, such as The Sinclair, Roadrunner, and a Starbucks at Boston College.

Following Del Water Gap’s set, the anticipation only grew as thousands of fans, decked out in Horan and One Direction-themed attire, awaited Horan’s appearance. As “The Chain” by Fleetwood Mac played just before Horan took the stage, fans rose from their seats, the excitement reaching a boiling point.

Horan’s performance began with “Nice to Meet Ya,” the lead single from Horan’s second album, “Heartbreak Weather.” Although the screens didn’t turn on at first, fans across the Xfinity Center still happily sang along.

Early in the show, Horan expressed how excited he had been for the Mansfield show, telling the eager crowd that tickets sold quickly.

“I believe this was my fastest-selling show, we sold 18,000 tickets in an hour,” Horan said, receiving vigorous applause and cheers from the crowd.

The crowd showed that same appreciation throughout the night. In the immediate song after, “The Show,” fans waved the flashlights of their phones to the heartfelt ballad. They did so again later on during “Dear Patience.”

Around a third of the way through the show, it was clear that many of the attendees were One Direction fans in the band’s heyday, as the volume reached a peak when a disco ball descended from the ceiling and Horan played “Night Changes,” one of their most popular songs.

Horan told the crowd he felt as if he was back in his home country of Ireland.

“I feel like I’m playing in Dublin, this is crazy,” he said.

Horan changed pace at one point, playing a three-song acoustic set that included his first song post-One Direction, “This Town.” 

After the acoustic set, the energy quickly rose back up, as Horan sang “Heaven,” the lead single from “The Show.” The crowd’s energy only continued to increase as Horan played fan-favorite songs such as “San Francisco” and “Meltdown.”

After “Meltdown,” Horan read some of the posters and signs fans brought to the show, and received a special gift from a fan in the front row: a shirt listing all of the Irish pubs in Boston.

The main set ended with two slower songs, “Mirrors” and “Still,” which prompted fans to sway along.

The night wasn’t over just yet, as Horan came back for an encore. The first was “Heartbreak Weather,” the titular song of his second album, and “Slow Hands,” one of the singles from his debut studio album, “Flicker.” 

As the performance came to a close, it was once again clear that the love between Horan and the fans gathered at the Xfinity Center was a strong one, making for a beautiful and memorable performance.

Setlist for Niall Horan at Xfinity Center, Saturday, June 15

  1. Nice to Meet Ya
  2. Small Talk / Edge of Seventeen (Stevie Nicks)
  3. On a Night Like Tonight
  4. On the Loose
  5. The Show
  6. Seeing Blind
  7. Save My Life
  8. Night Changes (One Direction)
  9. Black and White
  10. Dear Patience
  11. This Town
  12. You Could Start a Cult
  13. Heaven
  14. If You Leave Me
  15. San Francisco
  16. Meltdown
  17. Mirrors
  18. Still

Encore

  1. Heartbreak Weather
  2. Slow Hands





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