Following Fraser’s big announcement that her and husband Scott Ligertwood are expecting their first child, Fraser also recently unveiled official news of her return to tour New Zealand in June.
The New Zealand singer now based in Los Angeles has been touring North America, Australia and Asia in recent months in support of her fourth LP Brutal Romantic.
“These shows are going to be very special for us all,” Fraser promises. “It’s going to be a little more intimate than the Brutal Romantic tour I have been on internationally so I promise to load it with more treats for you fans who have been with me longer than anyone.”
The June tour replaces New Zealand shows postponed earlier in the year.
“I wish I could hit all the regions but I’ve been advised that a busier schedule will not be possible,” says Brooke.
Fraser will appear at the Isaac Theatre Royal on June 24, Wellington’s Opera House on 26 June and the Holy Trinity in Auckland on 27 June. Tickets on sale via Ticketek & Ticketmaster from April 7.
24th June 2015
Isaac Theatre Royal, Christchurch
On Sale Soon
26th June, 2015
The Opera House, Wellington
On Sale Soon
27th June, 2015
Holy Trinity Cathedral, Auckland
On Sale Soon
BROOKE FRASER @ HOLY TRINITY CATHEDRAL, AUCKLAND
There are plenty of great ways to spend a Saturday night, but I’m now certain that the best option is to hang out at church with BROOKE FRASER. Brooke rounded up her ‘Brutal Romantic’ world tour in Auckland’s Holy Trinity Cathedral, which was the perfect venue to showcase the Kiwi songstress’ angelic vocals and ethereal presence. While her New Zealand shows were scaled back due to her pregnancy, Brooke delivered a beautifully intimate performance, proving exactly why she is one of the country’s most beloved artists.
Opening the show with a stunning array of flashing lights, Brooke appeared onstage to perform ‘Psychosocial’, a track lifted from her latest album ‘Brutal Romantic’. This is the first time Brooke has played her new, more electronically-focused album live for New Zealand audiences and it definitely went down a treat. With a series of heavy voice modifications (provided by a looper), sassy hair flips, and white Adidas Shelltoes paired with a designer dress, Brooke showed just how fittingly she has transitioned into her new, edgier persona for the ‘Brutal Romantic’ era. The show’s opener was accompanied by a flawless rendition of ‘Magical Machine’, complete with the (aptly) magical robotic sounds which complemented Brooke’s syrupy sweet voice.
“You sound so good! Welcome to church! I’m Brooke, if you didn’t know that,” the singer joked, before providing an explanation for her rigid posture: “I have these sticky things on the front of me and I can feel a little bit of slippage already. I’m hoping it’s not potential lactation. I’ll just incorporate that into my dance moves.” In case it’s not clear, Brooke was wrestling with the struggles associated with the stick-on bra that accompanied her backless dress. For a woman in her third trimester of pregnancy, Brooke gave an amazing performance. Pregnancy is extremely tiring, yet she somehow managed to stalk across the stage, dancing and swaying in her typical Brooke Fraser-fashion. A few songs on the setlist required the sounds of a guitar, which to me seems like an awkward task with a protruding baby bump, but Brooke made it look effortless, as always.
Before I continue with this review, I’d like to take a moment to appreciate just how adorable Brooke Fraser is. Throughout the show, Brooke provided the audience with some hilarious, lovable and insightful quotes, which I’d like to recount with a ‘Top 10 Brooke Fraser Show Quotes’ list:
1). “Either I’m pregnant or I ate gluten.”
2). “If a chicken fillet [stick-on bra] falls out, I’ll sign it and throw it out to the crowd.”
3). “You can should any word you want for this bit. For some reason the word that came to my mind was venison.”
4). “Church is to be enjoyed, not endured.”
5). “I hope it makes your heart swell – that’s a bit cute, isn’t it?”
6). “I feel like Maria Von Trapp.”
7). “Pregnancy brain is a real thing. I don’t care what anyone thinks.”
8). “I’m just gonna switch bracelets and nibble off the corner of this nail.”
9). [Speaking about researching the Fraser family crest] “I was hoping for a boar with blood dripping down its face… Much to my chagrin and dismay, it’s a strawberry.”
10). “Thank you for coming whenceforth you came… I saw the stained glass windows and thought I should say that.”
After crowd-sourced versions of the stunning song ‘Shadowfeet’ and the enigmatic track ‘Thunder’, Brooke dove into a speech about being thirteen and getting her ears pierced. This eventuated into a metaphor about one of her classic songs, ‘Arithmetic’, getting “its ears pierced”, followed by an edgier version of the song. Drawing inspiration from the ‘Brutal Romantic’ album, ‘Arithmetic’ was still the same gorgeous song we all know and love, but with added elements of electronic music. Chanting background vocals, a slightly faster tempo and flashing blue strobes all helped transform the song into a “thirteen year-old” version of itself.
Taking refuge on a stool (hey, pregnancy is hard!), Brooke pleased the crowd with some extra special “nuggets” to honour the end of her tour being in her home country (because she loves us!). A super cute throwback to her 2010 single ‘Sailboats’ reminded the crowd just how incredible Brooke’s voice is. As her smokey toned echoed off the cathedral walls, blue wave patterns were projected across the roof, emulating the gentle sea-esque nature of the song.
If ‘Albertine’ (a song about feeling responsible for helping the people of Rwanda) doesn’t indicate just how philanthropic Brooke is, then let me add that she collaborated with local designers to create a maternity dress for each of her New Zealand shows. The best part? The dresses, designed by Stolen Girlfriends Club, Juliette Hogan and Zambesi (pictured) are going to be auctioned off with proceeds going to Starship’s Newborn Intensive Care Unit. This is why we love you, Brooke!
Brooke’s performance of ‘Brutal Romance’ was one of the most memorable songs of the night, which could be because it’s one of her favourite songs ever and it’s loaded with cherished memories. Prior to the song, Brooke explained how one of her dreams was to write a song that called for French horns. Finally, while recording ‘Brutal Romance’ in Abbey Road Studio Two (yep, the iconic Beatles studio), Brooke got her “damn French horns”. The encore consisted of fan favourites ‘Better’ and the kiwi classic ‘Something in the Water’, which saw the night end with a crowd sing-a-long. After watching the crowd’s reactions and feeling the overall vibe in the room, it became palpable that Brooke Fraser has an infectiously inspirational aura, full of all those warm-fuzzy feelings that resonate throughout her music and personality.
Stacey McLeod - Coup De Main Magazine