Concert Report: Westlife Turns Up the Heat in Singapore

  • Western
  • Highlights
  • Singapore
  • Concert
Chen Meiyue

It’s hot in Singapore.Last Saturday night, the mercury was pushed up a few notches. Boyband Westlife— or should we call them manband —returned to Singapore for a concert after eight years.

“I feel like we’re doing this show in a sauna,” quipped Nicky, as he wiped his face with a large towel on stage. “But it’s the best show in a sauna we’ve ever done!”

But the weather wasn’t the hottest thing that night for the 20,000 fans who packed the Singapore National Stadium. Westlife was.

The Irish quartet may be inching towards their 40s, but age clearly sits well with the lads who have now matured into men.Shane Filan,Nicky Byrne, Kian Egan and Mark Feehily are celebrating the band's 20th anniversary with the global concert tour,The Twenty Tour.

Looking as fit as ever, these doting dads still ooze that boyish charm that made legions of fans fall in love with them at the turn of the millennium.

The two-hour show got off to an electrifying start as the band opened with Hello My Love, their new single penned by Ed Sheeran that has marked the band’s return to form and the charts.

The crowd then sang along passionately to Swear It Again, Westlife’s first No. 1 single that propelled them to pop stardom back in 1999.

Fan favourites My Love and If I Let You Go cranked the heat up further, while the upbeat tunes of When You’re Looking Like That and Uptown Girl got the crowd boogieing to the beat.

During the encore segment, Westlife performed Flying Without Wingsin the same all-white ensemble featured in their original music video, a nostalgic nod to the heydays of the 1990s boy bands.

As if temperatures couldn't rise any further, the lads got the ladies all hot under their collars.

When performing a medley of Queen classics, theyteased with hip thrusts and butt gyrations to classicsAnother One Bites the Dust, Radio Gaga and I Want to Break Free.

There were glorious close-ups of their butts splashed all over the big screens, so even the fans who were seated way up high could get in on all the action. The fangirling crowd lapped it all up and captured the sublime sight with their mobile phones.

It didn’t matter that the band didn’t have the niftiest dance moves. Westlife was having fun on stage and so were the fans offstage.

Afterall, Westlife's greatest assets are their soaring vocals.

Lead singer Shane's vocals were as solid as ever. Mark's singing has gotten even better over the years, and he absolutely slayed it with a string of high notes. No wallflowers, Nicky and Kian took turns to flex their vocal muscles.

The quartet killed the acoustic section with goosebumps-inducing renditions of Unbreakable and Queen of My Heart.

The band was in top form despite performing five back-to-back concerts within five days, two nights in Indonesia, two nights in Malaysia and then in Singapore.

The surprise of the night came when an Irish couple got engaged on stage.Westlife was in on the plan and topped it off by serenading them withBetter Man, another new single written by Ed Sheeran.

As the concert wound down, Kian confessed that they thought it was the end of Westlife when they broke up in 2012.They were nervous about getting back together again in 2018. Would anyone care, they wondered.

Facing the faithful fans who filled up the largest indoor arena Westlife has played in their entire 20 years, the answer was obvious.

Thanking the fans, Kian said, “You’ve made our dreams come true, not just one time, but two times.”

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