Taylor Swift brought her Eras Tour – which, so far, has seen arguably the biggest pop star on the planet playing to sold-out crowds on a trek that’s on track to net at least $590 million in ticket sales – to East Rutherford, New Jersey for a second night on Saturday (May 27).
Aside from the hoops everyone at MetLife Stadium went through to be present (Swift’s tour ticket sales proved too much for Ticketmaster to handle, a situation that escalated to the U.S. Congress), people showed up with fairly high expectations for the evening. After all, the previous night’s Eras Tour stop in Jersey saw a surprise appearance from Ice Spice on their newly released “Karma” remix; Jack Antonoff joined his frequent collaborator for “Getaway Car” on one of two surprise songs; and Swift debuted three flashy new outfits.
So on Saturday, the crowd was prepared for a show. And after a three-and-a-half-hour tour through the catalog of one of the 21st century’s biggest artists – one whose discography has shown a lyrical breadth and growth that few of her peers can lay claim to – attendees were more than satisfied, if not ecstatic, after night two of the MetLife dates.
It didn’t hurt that Ice Spice made her second consecutive appearance on the tour for the show-ending “Karma,” a sly pop bop that afforded the Bronx-based rapper the opportunity to flex in front of a 74,000-strong crowd of New York and New Jersey folks following the breakout success of “Munch (Feelin’ U)” and the Nicki Minaj collab “Princess Diana.”
Here are the seven best moments of Taylor Swift’s second night at MetLife Stadium.
Early in the show, Swift acknowledged that the crowd – an audience three-times larger than the capacity at a venue like Madison Square Garden across the river — was an achievement. “New Jersey, I’m not gonna lie to you, you’re making me feel phenomenal,” Swift said. “There are a trillion things you could do this evening…. Correct me if I’m wrong and scream if I’m right: You went to a lot of effort to be here with us.” Unsurprisingly, there were no corrections forthcoming.
‘Tis the Dusk Season
For a show of the caliber of the Eras Tour, it’s not always easy to tell which magical moments are meticulously plotted and which ones simply fall into place. But on Saturday night, the rotation of the earth dovetailed nicely with the show. As dusk fell and pine trees emerged from the bottom of the stage (conifers that almost seemed lifted from the experiential theater Sleep No More in NYC), Swift began singing “’Tis the Damn Season” while golden hues drenched the stage against the evening twilight.
Fans Invoke Villainous Behavior
During the Reputation segment of the evening – an era that found Swift exploring and embracing some of the inevitable cracks in the façade of perfection – a few fans took it upon themselves to play the bad guy role. A trio of Swifties invaded a couple’s floor seats when they left their chairs for a moment, and when gently questioned, they merely offered, “It’s our favorite song” before “…Ready for It” was performed. Well, that’s one way to celebrate Swift’s so-called villain era. (Most Swifties, it should be said, were excessively friendly and considerate during the show.)
Farewell to Phoebe
While opening act Phoebe Bridgers had one night left to go on the Eras Tour, Swift was already mourning the impending loss of one of her “favorite artists” on Saturday. Calling the fact that Jersey was Bridgers’ last Eras Tour stop “devastating,” Swift seemed especially attuned to Bridgers as the two duetted on “Nothing New” during the show.
Surprise Song #1
Swift has said that during the surprise song segments on each stop of the Eras Tour, she intends to perform songs that hadn’t previously appeared on the tour’s setlist — and never repeat a tune. Given the perimeters, speculation is pretty high each night of the tour, so after Taylor announced she would be playing “One of my favorites…. I feel like it’s a pretty good choice for tonight,” the crowd all but melted when she began playing Red track “Holy Ground.”
Surprise Song #2
Moving to the upright piano after “Holy Ground,” Swift gave one Lover track its first-ever live moment in the spotlight: “False God,” her saxophone-assisted exploration of religion and sex, which helped set up the final portion of the night as Swift transitioned into Midnights.
Spice Is Twice As Nice
Twenty-four hours after Ice Spice helped Taylor give the “Karma” remix its live debut at MetLife Stadium, the Bronx rapper returned to the massive New Jersey venue to once again deliver her smooth, confident verse on the collab. Anyone thinking lightning couldn’t strike twice in the same spot was in for a rude awakening on Saturday — Spice and Swift slayed just as hard the second time.
This story originally appeared on Billboard