On her recently released album, Melodrama, “Places” is the final song. It revolves around a thick drum, purposely driving the production forward. But on Late Night, Lorde’s set was nearly beat-less. It added a forlorn sensibility to the song, complimenting the lyrics in a literal way as she sings about rituals of youth – the cycle of “graceless night[s].”
Lorde emphasized lines like “let’s kiss and then take off our clothes” with a raspy flourish. She also danced freely and enthusiastically, just as she did when performing “Green Light” at the Billboard Music Awards earlier this year.
In an interview with Meyers before the performance, Lorde was less encumbered. She delightfully remembered getting stuck on a New York City subway for four hours while working on the album. She also discussed the role that her synesthesia played in the LP’s creation. “For me, music and words kind of have colors and textures and forms,” she explained.
This sometimes led to confusion when she was trying to communicate with her producer Jack Antonoff (a “synesthesia muggle,” she quipped). “I would be like, ‘it just doesn’t look very nice,'” she recalled. “And he would be like, ‘what do you want me to do with that information … there’s nothing there!'”
They figured it out in the end, and listeners responded well to Melodrama, which debuted at the top of the Billboard Albums chart, giving Lorde her first Number One. Next year, the singer will perform the album on an arena tour of the U.S. in March and April.