Lorde briefly returned to the stage on Wednesday, March 31 when she joined singer/songwriter Marlon Williams for a surprise cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “Tougher Than the Rest.” The performance took place during a sold-out show at the Hollywood Avondale in Auckland, New Zealand.
The duo sang Springsteen’s Tunnel of Love (1987) cut as a duet with Williams playing piano. Since it’s a duet, it’s more comparable to the live version of the song from the music video for the track, which Springsteen sang with Patti Scialfa, who married him a few years later. Williams and Lorde’s version strips away the rock guitar and drums and lets their vocals drive the song.
It’s fitting that Lorde joined Williams for the cover since Springsteen had performed her song “Royals” when he was playing shows in New Zealand in 2014. His cover was a solo guitar, vocals and harmonica rendition of the hit.
New Zealand has been doing a good job of keeping COVID-19 numbers low, and the city of Wellington just hosted the largest in-person music festival since quarantine began, CubaDupa. The festival reportedly has 50 stages and about 1,750 different artists. It was a free event, with about 120,000 attendees on Saturday alone.
Lorde has stated that she’s still working on her third album in remote collaboration with Jack Antonoff, which she began work on in 2019. It was delayed for a bit towards the end of 2019 due to the loss of the singer’s dog Pearl, and there hasn’t been a tentative release date yet.
— Coup De Main ✨ (@coupdemain) March 31, 2021
Photo credit: Sharon Alagna