Live Review: Troye Sivan

13 January 2016 | 3:13 pm | Ashley Westwood

"Sivan keeps surprising the music community with what he is capable of..."

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The ubiquity of social networking has dominated media and teenage culture for the past few years. With the likes of YouTube and Vine quickly replacing traditional media for young people, a new age of stardom has emerged. Perth's own Troye Sivan is undoubtedly part of that movement. An actor and singer from a young age, Sivan moved into the vlogging world of YouTube through personal, diary-style videos in 2012. He gained rapid popularity online, with a legitimate music career soon following as he continued to experiment through the medium.

The South African-born, Dianella-bred 20-year-old played an intimate show at Astor Theatre on Monday night for a crowd of friends, family and the most devoted of fans. The night kicked off with a DJ set from Sivan's brother, Tyde Levi, who conducted a performance of well-honed, expertly mixed club music that left the crowd pumped and ready for the main act. As the lights went down, a simple stage set-up was revealed. A blue-neon outline of a house began to glow alongside a simple keyboard/drum set-up. Troye Sivan hit the stage to a cacophony of cheers and screams. A 'coming home' concert after successes overseas clearly meant a lot to the 1,000 or so gathered in the Astor, at this show that sold out in under a minute back in November.

His performance opened with Bite, a melodic and atmospheric track from his latest album, Blue Neighbourhood. The relaxed nature of this gig was an effective way of demonstrating Sivan's vocal prowess in a live setting while simultaneously warming up the crowd. The set gained pace as the night went on.

Next up was the expertly produced, contemporary pop single Fools, which has received much critical acclaim. The slightly more down-tempo track Cool followed, but both brought a crafted blend of relaxed, danceable music that isn't particularly mainstream but captures an alt.pop vibe that was enjoyed by anyone sonically inclined.

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The momentum continued and the crowd's enthusiasm didn't wane when more songs from his latest album, such as EaseTalk Me Down and Suburbia were presented. Wild, another hit single, was what wrapped up the relatively short-but-sweet set.

An encore was demanded and Sivan came back out to perform a revised version of his first studio single, Happy Little Pill. This was reworked as an acoustic piece, his signature stripped-back, dreamy vocals complementing the soft production. To finish off the night, Youth was enthusiastically belted out before Sivan thanked everyone for coming and left the stage for the final time.

Sivan keeps surprising the music community with what he is capable of and has clearly come a long way since the home-made videos recorded at his bedroom desk in his parents' house just a few years ago. Tonight marked the first major Australian show for Troye and with a Sydney show and tour across Europe and North America kicking off soon, it is safe to say 2016 is going to be a very big year for him. Definitely one to keep an eye on.