For the past month or so, Camila Cabello has been sharing cryptic videos and photos with fans on Instagram. In some photos, she's depicted as a cherubic creature pierced by arrows. In others, vintage gold keys open her chest to reveal a beating machine heart and a Polly Pocket-style castle. It's all part of Cabello's curated rollout for her latest album, Romance, set to be released at a still-unannounced date later this year.
"Welcome to the World of Romance," read the Instagram teaser clips, but there's not much fans know about the album yet aside from its two lead singles, "Shameless" and "Liar." The songs do hint at some key facts: Cabello is definitely in love with her Ken-doll boyfriend, singer Shawn Mendes, and she is really, really horny. She practically screams it on "Shameless": "There's just inches in between us/I want you to give in, I want you to give in, oh/There is tension in between us/I just wanna give in."
Hey, she's 22 now. Who can blame her? The former Fifth Harmony singer is following the "Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman" blueprint for pop stars who've grown up in the limelight and want to assert their blossoming sexuality. Those Instagram teaser clips are part of the strategy. And if Wednesday's Fillmore Miami Beach show was any indication, Cabello isn't planning to turn down anytime soon.
She opened the show with "Shameless" to give fans a taste of the new record, but those who were expecting to hear unreleased songs were in for a disappointment. Instead, Cabello used her first show in months to remind her audience why she was the first singer to break out of one of the most successful girl groups of all time, largely with performances of songs from her debut, Camila.
The last time Cabello was in Miami for a similar appearance was in February 2018, when she held a listening party of her debut album at Gramps. The crowd was so young that the bar served nonalcoholic drinks throughout the afternoon. Though, for the most part, she sang those same songs at the Fillmore last night, Cabello's energy was significantly different from the goofy vibe she put on at Gramps last year. Instead, this time, she thrashed about onstage, repeatedly swung her ass in the audience's face, and seemed like she felt fully free.
Part of that comfort came from performing in front of her hometown audience. The singer constantly shouted out Miami and its "humid-ass weather." Among the loudest-sung lyrics was "Grew up in southside Miami," which refers to her childhood home in Pinecrest.
Given the familiar crowd, Cabello felt comfortable enough to not only let loose onstage but also cry with her audience. In the midst of singing "Scar Tissue," Cabello's voice began to break. "Goddammit, I'm getting more emotional as I get older," she said through visible tears. She sat to talk to fans about overcoming anxiety over the past year as her profile rose, and she reminded fans — many of whom are growing up right along with her — that "the person you need to be most patient and most loving with is yourself."
Though fans at the show were likely hoping for a deeper glimpse into the singer's sophomore solo album, in a sense they seemed to get more than that, with a performance that was at times wild, emotional, and raw. The rest she'll reveal during the inevitable supporting arena tour. In the meantime, there's always Instagram.
- "Never Be the Same"
- "She Loves Control"
- "Inside Out"/"Mi Gente" Interlude
- "New Friends"
- "All These Years"
- "Scar Tissue"
- "Find U Again"
- "Bad Things"
- "In the Dark"
- "I'm Into It"
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