Two years ago, Taylor Swift played what she referred to as “the infamous rain show” at Gillette Stadium, when a downpour couldn’t deter her or the fans who came out to see her. Friday night, the first of two sold-out shows, threatened a repeat of that evening, but the precipitation, when it came, was light enough to endure and never lasted too long. The focus, it turned out, would be on the spectacle on stage instead of the weather.
And there was spectacle aplenty, with dancers waving red flags, fireworks, drummers that rose and sank in the air like pistons, and plenty of costume changes (one of which, from a Cinderella-style dress to a black hot pants/bustier combo, occurred onstage right in the middle of “I Knew You Were Trouble”). With the exception of the mandolin, banjo, and fiddle filling out “Mean,” there were few vestiges of Swift’s country origins. The singer was there to deliver a pop concert, pure and simple.