Swedish House Mafia review: EDM titans deliver the hits in fiery show at Abu Dhabi F1

Swedish trio headlined this year's second after-race concert on Friday

Fans cheer as Usher performs at Abu DhabiÕs F1 concert in Etihad Park, Yas Island. Khushnum Bhandari / The National
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

Formula One Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2022 hosted the latest stop of one of this year's most anticipated world tours.

Ever since reforming an epic set at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in California in April, Swedish House Mafia have been packing out stadiums across Europe and the US with their brand of uplifting and progressive house music.

The crowd at Etihad Park on Friday night received the full aural and audio treatment with the trio — DJs Steve Angello, Axwell and Sebastian Ingrosso — not skimping when it comes to production.

Swedish House Mafia unveiled their new stage set design, featuring a circular structure resembling a flying saucer, at the 2022 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival. AP

They performed under what resembled a tilting flying saucer and a background of frenetic visuals.

The stage also accommodated a massive lighting rig emanating all forms of effects and there were the obligatory pyrotechnics that became more apparent as the set picked up steam.

This was all just as well. The Swedes are not the most charismatic performers and spent most of the set in silhouette.

Then again, no extra song and dance routines are necessary when your set list is packed with some of the genre’s biggest anthems of the past decade.

While Swedish House Mafia returned in April with a solid new album Paradise Again, their set in Abu Dhabi traded heavily on nostalgic sounds.

Beginning with 2012's Greyhound and going on to include bass-heavy monsters Antidote and Miami 2 Ibiza.

With Paradise Again not a major departure from their established sounds, new tracks — such as the shuddering Redlight and the synth-tastic Don't Go Mad slipped easily into the mix.

As they played a major role in The Weeknd's blockbuster album Dawn FM, the group rightfully played their two production contributions, Sacrifice and Moth to the Flame, to the roar of the crowd.

The big emotional release arrived in the end with anthems Don't You Worry Child, For You and Save the World blended together to induce the kind of euphoria that allowed the trio to reclaim their top-tier status after nearly a decade away.

The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix after-race concerts continue on Saturday with Kendrick Lamar, with Def Leppard taking to the stage on Sunday.

Access to after-race concerts is exclusive to Abu Dhabi Grand Prix ticket holders. Tickets are available online at www.yasmarinacircuit.com and through the Yas Marina Circuit Call Centre on 800 927 or 02 659 9800

Friday Family Day at F1 fan zone at Yas Marina Circuit - in pictures

Updated: November 19, 2022, 10:44 AM
MORE FROM THE NATIONAL