SAN FRANCISCO — Think of Sigrid as a dark horse pop star. The 21-year-old Norwegian singer-songwriter, who headlined a sold-out show at the Independent Monday, recently was named as the winner of the BBC Sound of 2018, joining the ranks of previous winners like Sam Smith, Haim and Adele. Yet on stage Monday, dressed in in comfy jeans and a T-shirt, Sigrid looked more the part of someone looking to curl up on the couch with a book.
Sigrid, who grew up in the tiny town of Ålesund in Norway, leisurely ran through 15 of her songs in about an hour; starting and ending with a series of bangers like “Go To War,” “Schedules” and her better-known singles like “Don’t Kill My Vibe” and “Strangers.” But the heart of the show was composed of slower ballads.
Cuts like “Savage in Our Blood” and new song “I Don’t Want to Know” slowed the tempo but provided some of the more tender moments from the show.
“I know it’s cheesy, but this one’s about staying true to who you are,” Sigrid said, introducing another slow-burner, “Raw.” Still, she was strongest during her disco-infused cuts that had the artist swiveling her hips and the fans dancing along.
Sigrid was preceded on stage by CYN. The Michigan-raised pop singer-songwriter, who was most recently in the Bay Area opening for Børns last fall, blasted through a bubbly but brief set of tunes like “Believer,” “Together,” “Only With You” and “Alright.” Even on the set’s lone ballad, the self-loving “I’ll Still Have Me,” Cynthia Nabozny couldn’t help but grin from ear to ear.
Australian Dean Lewis, who had received a handful of ARIA Award nominations (that country’s equivalent of GRAMMYs), opened the show with a short solo set of moody pop songs. Looking like a young Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol, Lewis also showed Lightbody’s self-effacing humor.
“I hope you don’t hate it,” he said as he introduced a new tune called “Tumble.” The lyrics to another one of his tracks, “7 Minutes,” even had a line about chasing cars. Lewis switched off between the keyboard on songs like “Waves,” which had more bittersweet moments, and an acoustic guitar.
— Roman Gokhman
Follow photographer Lauren Low at laurenlowphotography.com.