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Taylor Swift debuts ‘Anti-Hero’ at surprise The 1975 appearance in London

She also covered 'The City' as part of an acoustic interlude

By Joe Goggins

Split of Taylor Swift and The 1975 press shots, 2022
The cameo came on the first of two nights in London for The 1975. (Photos: Press)

Taylor Swift played ‘Anti-Hero’ live for the first time as she made a surprise appearance at The 1975’s London show last night (January 12).

The pop icon played two acoustic tracks at the midpoint of the Manchester band’s ‘At Their Very Best’ gig at The O2 Arena, following up ‘Anti-Hero’ with a cover of the early 1975 single ‘The City’. You can see fan-shot footage of both below.

It marked a live debut for the lead single from October’s record-breaking tenth full-length Midnights, which topped the album charts on both sides of the Atlantic. Swift is thought to now be based in the capital with her partner, the actor Joe Alwyn, and the appearance marks the second time she has cameoed at a London arena show in recent months, having joined Bon Iver at Wembley Arena last October to play their collaborative single ‘exile’.

For The 1975, the heavyweight guest turn came as they opened a two-night stand in North Greenwich, with the UK leg of their ‘At Their Very Best’ tour having gotten underway in Brighton on Sunday. In a five-star review for Rolling Stone UK, Nick Reilly called that gig “a defining blueprint on how to do arena shows.” The show incorporates performance art and rebukes toxic masculinity as part of its two-act structure, with the gig’s first half focusing largely on last year’s fifth LP Being Funny in a Foreign Language and the second a greatest-hits affair.

The 1975 play a second London O2 Arena show tonight, before taking the ‘At Their Very Best’ tour to a further nine UK cities from Sunday, including a homecoming show at Manchester’s AO Arena next Friday (January 20). See the full dates below.

The 1975, January 2022:

13 – London, The O2 Arena

15 – Birmingham, Resorts World Arena

16 – Cardiff, Motorpoint Arena

17 – Cardiff, Motorpoint Arena

19 – Glasgow, The SSE Hydro

20 – Manchester, AO Arena

22 – Nottingham, Motorpoint Arena

23 – Leeds, First Direct Arena

25 – Newcastle, Utilita Arena

26 – Liverpool, M&S Bank Arena

30 – Belfast, SSE Arena