Home Music Music Live Reviews

Tash Sultana Brings Mesmerising Farewell Show to Auckland

The Aussie superstar captivated the audience at their last show before an indefinite break from touring

Tash Sultana

Tom Grut

Tash Sultana wrapped up a hugely successful era with a mesmerising show at Auckland’s Spark Arena.

The night was a major milestone for the exceptionally talented multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter, a culmination of thousands of performances around the world.

In sincere words officially shared on social media a week prior, Sultana revealed that this performance would be their last for the foreseeable future, stepping into an indefinite hiatus from touring.

To kick things off, Sultana set the vibe with videos of their humble beginnings, street busking in Melbourne—the origin of their journey to becoming an Australian music superstar.

Reflecting on a decade of touring, they shared, “I’ve been on tour for ten years, played thousands of shows, sold millions of tickets worldwide, literally done everything possible to get onto the stage and play a fucking gig. It’s been a crazy way to shape my life…” 

“I’m going to step away for a bit. I’m still going to play music, that’s never going to change, but honestly I cannot be bothered going on tour anymore. ”

The packed crowd responded with thunderous chants and ovation, standing behind the bold decision.

Tash Sultana

Credit: Tom Grut

Then it was onto the music. Sultana delivered nearly two hours of explosive, psychedelic rock instrumentation that showcased her powerful vocal range, featuring catalogue favourites like “Pretty Lady”, “Cigarettes”, and “Blackbird”.

Experiencing a Tash Sultana show in person is a whole different ball game from reading about their masterful live-looping performance: the speed at which they play and switch instruments—guitar, keys, synth drums, saxophone, recorder, and even a vintage mandolin—while staying in rhythm is unreal and incredibly fun to watch.

Sultana was backed by their band for a few songs, showcasing a skillful synergy that made their saxophone and guitar solos truly captivating.

Remaining in high spirits throughout, Sultana expressed gratitude to those who travelled internationally for the show, acknowledging messages from fans as far away as the United States, Mexico, and Brazil, as well as “fam from New Zealand.”

Tash Sultana

Credit: Tom Grut

Joking with the crowd about the “perfect time to smoke some marijuana,” they added, “Not gonna condone, but if you were gonna blaze up, it’s the perfect time right now.” Puffs rose in the air, complementing the kaleidoscopic stage projections of levitating cobra snakes, trippy mushrooms, and fluorescent floating jellyfish.

Sultana introduced only one new song from their latest Sugar EP, the lush and reflective “1975”. Their viral bedroom hit “Jungle” (with a whopping 165 million views on YouTube) received the most massive applause, building up slowly and then exploding into an electrifying spectacle. 

As Sultana bid their final goodbyes, there was a palpable emotional moment, acknowledging the last roar of the crowd for a while.