Film, Album, Single and Event Reviews

Live Review: Sam Smith at the iTunes Festival

  • By Art. Author Avatar
  • 10 Sep 2014
  • Event Date 9 Sep 2014
Sam Smith at the iTunes Festival

Written by Grace Stewart.

I think its fair to say that I was one of a few lucky reviewers to be able to attend the iTunes Festival last night. Not only was it the night that Apple chose to launch the iPhone 6 (which weve all been eagerly anticipating) but headlining the night was Sam Smith. I can definitely admit I was one of many singing along to almost every song Smith passionately performed. I even had Dermot OLeary sitting in front of me, bobbing his head along too. To be expected I suppose! 

So, lets discuss whats really important here, who was the lucky artist to open up for Sam Smith? That would be SOHN. Born Christopher Taylor, an English musician/song writer/producer based in Vienna, he owned the stage in what looked like a black snuggie, but was in fact a Daniel Andresen Sula hooded cardigan (very fashionable). However, as his set progressed it wasnt so ideal. I would have to give him a ten out of ten for effort and a good twelve out of ten for providing us with such a great performance in what marks the start of an outstanding night. 


Moving swiftly onto the main man of the evening, a 30 second countdown projected on screens both left and right of the stage signaled his entrance. When the clock struck zero, the band eagerly made their way onto the stage and started to play the intro to Nirvana. We all knew that this was going to be a spectacle of a show and a well thought out set. I couldnt have been more correct, because as soon as he came out on stage, in his charming blue suit, he teased us with his smooth, soulful vocals, making sure we were ready for what was to come. Thrilled with his first performance, I could have happily bet money on the fact that it couldnt really get any better than this. However, in this instance, I was wrong. Sam then sneakily glided into the sultry, jazzy number called Together. Yes, we all swooned.  


This was a perfect way to start a set. Not only did it win over the crowd situated within the confines of the Roundhouse, but probably the millions of people that were watching all around the world too. Then, about half way through his main set, we were gifted with a little surprise. Yes, A$AP Rocky emerged to feature on Im Not The Only One. They both bounced off one another, working the crowd, giving us a truly memorable performance. I guess its quite obvious to say that everyone who attended definitely got spoilt. However I assure you, the best was left till the very end.  


After what seemed to be a hit after hit set list (which even included a rendition of Arctic Monkeys Do I Wanna Know?), the attendees present eagerly awaited more. To conclude his main set, Sam decided to perform Lay Me Down. For this song, many in the crowd retrieved their iPhones from their pockets to create, for a very overwhelmed Sam Smith, a romantic sea of light slowly waving from left to right. Perfection.  

We were then dished out, in full force, with what must currently be the UKs most well known single, Money On My Mind, which was cleverly placed pre-encore. It certainly received a phenomenal response from the crowd, and one that had undoubtedly made Sam Smith the master of the iTunes Festival of 2014. 

For the encore, Latch, Make It To Me and the single Stay With Me were performed. It must be said that it was an incredibly delivered and amazingly received encore. Song after song throughout the entirety of his performance could easily be a collection of number one singles and even though his nerves seemed visible towards the start of the show, he lightened the mood by admitting to the venue and the world that he had dribbled down his shirt. You couldnt ask for more.  


iTunes Festival, London 2014