Eric Chou 周興哲: Odyssey ~ Journey World Tour, Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne, May 21st 2023 – Live Review

As someone who has followed Eric Chou (周興哲) since debut, all the way back in 2014, I never expected to see him live in Melbourne! But here he was on Sunday the 21st of May for his Odyssey ~ Journey World Tour, greeting excited fans at Rod Laver Arena.

Eric took the stage with ‘That’s All’ and ‘說太多 (Say Too Much)’ with absolutely stunning visual effects and striking lighting, gaining lots of loud cheers from the Melbourne crowd. The screens, combined with the lighting, really did elevate his EDM flavour and quickly energized the keen audience.

In my mind, Eric is the new generation Ballad Prince. His love songs have proven to win the hearts of many, producing hit after hit. My heart was warmed by his soulful voice when he performed the 59th Golden Horse Award winner for Best Original Film Song ‘想知道你在想什麼 (What’s on Your Mind)’.

I loved how Eric spent time taking in the Melbourne audience and looked at each person in the venue. At one point, he located a fan he met the night before in Chinatown and even paid attention to a trio of fans who wore his Chinese name as individual characters on their shirts. Eric was so delighted; he asked the camera director to focus on the three clever fans.

One of the most anticipated parts of Eric Chou’s concert was when he sang his classic hits which consisted of his iconic love songs including ‘怎麼了 (What’s Wrong)’, ‘以後別做朋友 (The Distance of Love)’, ‘永不失聯的愛 (Unbreakable Love)’ and ‘你,好不好? (How Have You Been?)’. This moment turned the entire Melbourne arena into a giant karaoke session with the audience’s voices echoing across the entire arena while Eric, beaming, passed his mic out towards the crowd.

Eric also shared with us the backstory of what sparked him to write his debut song, ‘以後別做朋友 (The Distance of Love)’ involving his first crush, a close friend, who didn’t see him the same way. We were able to picture this nervous experience when he built up the courage, pulled her to a bench on a snowy day to confess his feelings, only to be told “I thought we were just friends”. He jokingly mentioned that at least he was able to get a song out of this experience despite the heartbreak at the time.

I am aware that Eric enjoys adding a song from his role models or songs that he particularly likes into his sets, but I was happily surprised when he added Jay Chou’s ‘擱淺 (Step Aside)’. It was even more surprising when the audience sang along with him, as if the song was his own.

Interestingly, instead of the usual pre-recorded videos played during outfit changes, Eric was able to maximise this time by introducing his marvellous band. We were able to enjoy a small solo snippet from the guitarist Tim Lin (林庭鈺), keyboardists Jeff Lu (呂致廷) and Jie Lin (林頡), bassist OD Lin (林奧迪), backing vocalists Lisa Djaati (謝凌君), Shivia Lee (李雅微), Jacob Lee (李安鈞), and Stanley Huang (黃欣偉), drummer Shang Chien Chiang (江尚謙), and music director/band leader and guitarist S.M.H. (黃宣銘).

The mood throughout the night was extremely wholesome, filled with Eric’s soothing vocals, but also because he was energetically throwing hearts to the audience whenever he had a chance. He was absolutely adorable! Eric even went through a few outfit changes throughout the night, but my favourite was his stunning white suit that made him look like royalty.

I actually really loved the stark differences in the lighting and backdrops from Eric’s comforting ballads and the EDM genre. As someone well known for mastering both, Eric definitely had a way of showing us the best of both worlds.

His friendly and approachable personality was showcased when he didn’t hesitate to get off stage and get up close and personal with fans during ’That’s Why I Like You’ taking selfies, giving high fives, and throwing signed posters to the crowd (very jealous of those lucky fans that caught their signed posters). I was also amazed that he took a massive song request session performing no less than 11 songs, singing snippets of every single one. I personally loved hearing ‘一樣美麗 (Forever Beautiful)’, ‘This Is Love’; and was shocked that he took requests for songs that weren’t his own; singing ‘刻在我心底的名字 (Your Name Engraved Herein)’ by Crowd Lu and ‘烏梅子醬 (The Dark Plum Sauce)’ by Ronghao Li.

The last song of the night could not have been more beautiful. The crowd transformed into a starry ocean while singing along to ‘如果雨之後 (The Chaos After You)’ before Eric bid every corner of the arena farewell before taking his final bow.

If there was any criticism, it would be the odd placement of the song requests being so close to the end of the show. After getting so intimate and interactive, and then transitioning straight into the last song, it felt as if the encore was missing something. Like the bond that was built was broken off a little too quickly and it left me craving for a little more. But that only proves how fabulous Eric Chou was live in concert. He could sing for hours on end and that would be fine.

It was an absolute pleasure seeing Eric Chou live and I left the arena with a reigniting love for all his iconic hits and his music. With his 10th anniversary coming up next year, I look forward to more of his work and what’s to come. Here’s to many more years of great music and to a hopeful return down under on his next world tour.

Proudly presented by UnUsUaL Entertainment and TEG Live, Eric Chou performed in Melbourne at Rod Laver Arena as part of his Odyssey ~ Journey World Tour on Sunday May 21st 2023. Unfortunately this date was the last of his Australian visit.

For more information on Eric Chou and his recent tour, visit:

Photography by Grant Alexander.

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