Billie Eilish takes Happier Than Ever Tour to Sacramento

Billie Eilish takes Happier Than Ever Tour to Sacramento
Photo cred: Josh Pierce, @joshpierce_

On the evening of Thursday, March 31st, thousands of fans descended upon Golden 1 Center in Sacramento to see Top 40’s brightest star — Billie Eilish. This show actually sold out in 2021, but was subsequently moved to 2022 due to COVID-19 protection measures. That did not deter the excitement, though, as the entry line nearly wrapped around the venue — a building that doubles as the home arena for NBA team, the Sacramento Kings. 

The show opened up with “Getting Older” — the first song on her latest album, ‘Happier Than Ever’.

This was an odd, yet surprisingly beautiful way to begin a performance, as I am accustomed to artists opening their sets with one of their more high-powered ‘hype’ songs. It really set the tone of a ‘safe space’ for the 19,000 fans attending. She then went into the second song on the album, “I Didn’t Change My Number”, before going into fan-favorite “bury a friend” from her previous album, When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?. Eilish went on to perform popular singles, such as “Therefore I Am” and throwback “idontwannabeyouanymore”. What really got me about this performance is the insanely HUGE and POWERFUL sound coming from Billie, her producer/brother FINNEAS and their drummer Andrew. For two musicians and a vocalist, they truly captivated the event center. 

Photo cred: Josh Pierce, @joshpierce_

After performing “my future”, Billie stopped the show and said, “Take every little bad thought in your head and take it out of your head… [No matter why you are here] you have the power to have a good time anywhere you are.” It was truly beautiful, because she reminded us all that we are in charge of our own destiny and future. Manifestation is real and we have to “grab life by the lapels” (as Maya Angelou has said). This was also when I finally got a good chance to look at her outfit: a custom Death Note T-shirt and shorts combo, so, guys, Billie is an anime fan!

Billie then went on to perform “you should see me in a crown”, “Billie Bossa Nova”, “tear myself apart” and “Halley’s Comet”. What came next was “Oxytocin” — one of the most sensory-impressive songs of the night. The performance touched on EDM, paired to the track’s industrial vibes and some serious percussion.

You could feel the pounding of the drums through the arena.

Something that was really noticeable during the performance was the diversity and power. Considering the band is a three-piece, they were able to cultivate a truly unique act. FINNEAS alone played four roles (bass, piano, guitar and vocals). For those who do not know, Billie Ellish’s music came about from the tight-knit bond between her and FINNEAS; the brother and sister writing duo describe themselves as “best friends” and, quite frankly, have a harmony style that is remnant of Jerry Cantrell and Layne Staley (of Alice in Chains). For being a pop group, they have a ton of punk rock energy to them.

During “Your Power”, the brother-sister team played guitar together, putting out some serious harmonies in a very MTV Unplugged style. As FINNEAS left the stage, Billie went into performing “Male Fantasy” alone on her guitar. This was the first song of the night where I felt the fans overpowered Billie’s vocals… but, that made it all the more special.

During “Not My Responsibility”, Eilish disappeared for several moments until a spotlight directed everyone’s attention to the other side of the arena. There she was, lifted up on a stage scissor lift. It gave out a very go-go dancer vibe — sensual, yet empowering. Honestly, it really reminded me of a psychedelic scene from a James Bond movie.

Photo cred: Josh Pierce, @joshpierce_

Before going into “ocean eyes” and “Bored”, Billie paused once again to connect with her audience. “It’s been so long… I want you to picture what makes you feel peaceful and calm,” Eilish encouraged. “Please, everyone, close your eyes and know that you are loved and safe. I want you to take a deep breath in and out with me.” She used her platform to connect and that was very profound for me. 

Billie and FINNEAS also took a second to explain that the next song, “everything i wanted”, was actually written by Billie detailing her relationship with her brother and how their dreams are happening for them in real-time. The pair seem to truly understand the weight and responsibility to the world as public figures, while maintaining this super close bond keeping them rooted in reality.

“We need to care for our planet and for our people,” Billie demands, before dropping into the most fun and energetic performance of “bad guy”. On the last note of the song, biodegradable confetti fell from the ceiling, covering fans as the band went on to thank attendees for coming. Catch Oscar and GRAMMY winners Billie Eilish and FINNEAS on the Happier Than Ever Tour, continuing throughout this Spring and Summer!

Photography by Josh Pierce, @joshpierce_

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