One Direction is the biggest global act to emerge from "The X Factor," by having No. 1 hits and sold-out tours in several countries. One Direction's 2013 world tour will go to Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand and Asia, with announced concerts dates spanning through November. Many of the tour's concerts sold out a year in advance.
Some footage from the tour will end up in the One Direction 3-D documentary "1D3D," directed by Oscar nominee Morgan Spurlock. "1D3D" is set for release in cinemas worldwide on Aug. 30, 2013.
Here's an excerpt from the Daily Mirror's review of the matinee show in London on Feb. 23, 2013:
"Harry Styles did his best to emulate rock legend Mick Jagger. Harry, 19, drew the loudest screams of the day as he appeared on stage in a black T-shirt bearing the Rolling Stones’ famous lips logo. More than 20,000 1D fans and their parents had packed into the venue as Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Harry, and Louis Tomlinson arrived on stage suspended by wires. Before a backdrop of the London skyline, with landmarks such as Big Ben and the Shard, fans were treated to a spectacular two-hour show including at least eight costume changes. The band performed the 3pm gig for their youngest fans. It was followed by an evening performance. Kicking off with hit single 'Up All Night,' the show featured videos of the boys, including one of Louis in a fat suit asking people for a hug and another with the lads dressed up as pensioners.
"Zayn introduced 'Little Things,' and the crowd was asked to wave glow sticks as Louis played the guitar. They also performed their Comic Relief single, 'One Way Or Another,' and Harry slammed fans who downloaded it illegally. “Shame on you,” he said. The crowd were in stitches as the band answered questions sent in via Twitter .... Liam introduced the band’s smash hit, 'More Than This,' saying: “'Good afternoon London! This place is absolutely huge, it’s amazing. I came here to watch Jay Z and Kanye West. I came here to watch Robbie Williams and now we are.'
"The five lads stood on a stage in the middle of fans to sing 'Last First Kiss.' The stage was lifted on wires into the air, and appeared to float above the crowd as fans waved glow sticks and camera flashes rebounded around the venue. After a quick costume change, Harry reappeared in a suit for the boy band’s song 'C’mon C’mon.' The group sat together to sing 'Over Again,' while Niall played guitar. At one point Louis admitted he needed a toilet break, confessing he had 'really needed a wee for six songs now.' Liam told the crowd it was 'mesmerizing' to watch them during 'Little Things,' and Harry thanked fans for making the day so special. Niall said: 'It’s these moments we think, "Wow, we’re here." This is our job – to stand in front of you and sing.'"
The Sun's review of the concert was also positive:
"Unlike their first tour last year, they had no warm-up shows. And they didn’t need them. Kicking off their 'Take Me Home' world tour in London at the biggest UK venue they’ve played to date was brave. They could have started it in Wales, like other performers do ... After a video intro and show countdown worked the crowd into a suitable frenzy, Liam was the first to reveal how overwhelmed they were kicking off the tour at the venue. After performing track 'One Thing,' he said: 'We never expected any of this to happen. This place is absolutely huge. I came here to watch Jay-Z and Kanye [West]. I came here to watch Robbie [Williams] and now we’re playing it ourselves.'
"An impressive pre-recorded video occupied fans during the group’s three costume changes. Harry is sat in a reading room smoking a pipe, while Niall somersaults into a pool fully clothed. Later, it shows them dressed up playing pranks around London — doing a gig in a disguise and Louis in a fat suit giving out free hugs. Even though all eyes were probably glued on the five rather than the visuals behind them, they were impressive. Vocally, you couldn’t fault them. Liam in particular stands out there. In a classic pop move, they traveled on a raised platform above the crowd while singing, to land on a square platform in the middle of the arena. There, they belted out their Comic Relief single, 'One Way Or Another (Teenage Kicks).'
"One thing they did keep repeating was how much they appreciated their fans. Before an encore of 'What Makes You Beautiful,' Niall added: 'I can’t quite believe this is my job — playing a concert to the best fans on the planet. Hopefully it will be a good tour. It’s been a great start with you guys as you’ve been amazing.' I can’t call myself a Directioner but I agree it was a good start. Well done boys."
The Daily Mail reported in this review of the same concert:
"The band, who will now be on the road until November, embraced a rocky style for their first show, dressed in T-shirts, jeans and trainers as they bounded around the stage. Harry Styles, who has had a busy week of partying thanks to London Fashion Week and the Brits, seemed on fine form as he performed all of the band's best known hits. Dressed casually, the teen heartthrob paired black skinny jeans with a Rolling Stones T-shirt and white Converse trainers, with his trademark curly hair looking as bouncy as usual ..
"And if they were nervous about the first show in their eagerly anticipated tour, they certainly didn't show it, proving just how excited they were by writing on their Twitter accounts. 'It's happening ! We're here #TMHtour is kicking off,' wrote Niall before posting a picture of the O2 Arena. After the show he wrote another message to all of his fans, saying: 'O2 ! You guys were incredible! Really hoped you enjoyed the show! what a great first show! Thank you guys! #TMHtour ! Round 2 in an hour.' Louis Tomlinson kept his sentiments short and, simply writing 'Loved it !!!!,' on his Twitter page."
Fans who were at the first two concerts on Feb. 23 went on the Internet to praise One Direction and say that they had a great time. Many more of these types of rave reviews from fans are to be expected as the tour continues.
Here is the set list from the concert:
Up All Night
More Than This
Love You First
Change My Mind
One Way or Another (Teenage Kicks)
Last First Kiss
Back for You
She's Not Afraid
Live While We're Young
What Makes You Beautiful
Feb. 24, 2013 update: The Telegraph gave one of the O2 Arena shows in London a mixed review (3 out of 5 stars). Here's an excerpt:
"'The X Factor' has proved it can pick out likeable stars, but the truncated TV format fails badly to teach stagecraft. One Direction may pride themselves on being the boyband who don’t do the cheesy dance routines, but over two hours, with their unexceptional voices and a stodgy section of ballads, what the lads were in dire need of was some kind of showmanship ... The highlights were often the pre-recorded video sections with the band larking about. More then the new Beatles, One Direction could well be the new Monkees, a manufactured band with some peppy tunes, big hair and some great, deadpan comic timing."