REVIEW: “Here” feels like home with Alessia Cara

Ellie Findell

More stories from Ellie Findell


Alessia Cara and her band pumped up their crowd on Oct. 8 at the Orpheum Theater. Fair Use Photo: EPentertainment

Crowds of lip gloss covered preteens and 30-something women out for a girls night crowded the Orpheum Theater last Saturday night to hear Alessia Cara and her two opening acts hit the aux. Cara, an 18-year-old Canadian singer who topped the Billboard Top 5 this past summer, is a sensation for many women and men due to her universal message of self-love and individualism.

The night began with Nathan Sykes, a singer from The Wanted coming on stage with a cup of coffee and a British accent. Sykes has the potential to produce some great music, but his songwriting needs a makeover along with his slightly boring vocal range. He nailed falsetto the few times he tried it but quickly went back to his range.

Ruth B, the second opening act, changed the atmosphere of the room the moment she stepped on stage. Her soft voice coupled with the clear love and enthusiasm her bandmates had for their music was immediately apparent. Her widely known hit “Lost Boy” uses the metaphor of Peter Pan to talk about being a kid and how imagination can fade as people grow older. The song was top 40 on Billboard 2016 and a daily occurrence on pop stations like 94.5 KS95 and 101.3 KDWB.

Both of the opening acts created a laid back atmosphere with almost the feel of a home or private concert. This atmosphere didn’t change when Cara came onstage, the screams just got louder. Just after coming onstage she said: “Just like last year you guys are so amazingly nice and have been the only small concert that stood for the opening acts right away so thank you, Minnesota, it’s a pleasure to be here.”

Unlike most performers, she started off with her less common tracks and then brought her main hits in at the end. It would have been better to start with songs like “Scars to your Beautiful” or “Wild Things” to help get the crowd pumped up. Cara fills her songs with heartfelt lyrics that call for a lower bass yet the bass was over the top even in the mellower songs, making it harder to appreciate her words. In general, Cara puts lots of thought, emotion and energy into her music and her band is clearly just as excited about the music as she is.



4 out of 5 stars.