LONDON - Billie Eilish briefly paused her show at London’s O2 arena on Saturday night after several fans got into difficulties in sweltering temperatures. “Are you all ok?” she asked. “People were fainting and getting pulled out. It’s hot, I know”. After fans said they were “squished”, she halted the music until the pressure in front of the stage eased. “Take a step back, give everybody some space,” Eilish said. “If someone looks a little woozy, just tell someone.” She added: “Don’t try to save feelings.” Earlier, Eilish had asked the O2 security team to distribute water to the audience. It is not the first time the singer has stopped a concert to check on her fans. In February, she interrupted her Happier Than Ever tour show in Atlanta after noticing someone struggling to breathe, and refused to proceed until they could access an inhaler. “Can we just grab one?” she asked a crew member.

Later that month, she also paused a show in New York’s Madison Square Garden, telling fans: “If you want to sit down, you are allowed.

Go ahead, you’re good. Sit down, take a breath.” The issue of crowd safety has been in the spotlight ever since 10 people were killed during a crush at Travis Scott’s Astroworld festival in Houston last year. Fans in the audience later criticised the response of emergency services, and asked why organisers did not call a halt to the concert. An inquiry is currently investigating the circumstances that led to the tragedy.

At the O2 on Saturday night, fans took matters into their own hands. One group, after noticing a fellow concertgoer in trouble, formed a protective circle and turned on their phone lights to alert the security team. Eilish resumed her show after three minutes. She later thanked “all the security and all the staff” at the venue, adding: “I appreciate you”. Saturday’s concert was the second of six dates at the 20,000 capacity O2 arena, as Eilish continues her Happier Than Ever world tour.

The atmosphere had been feverish from the start; with the star’s breathy vocals frequently drowned out by fans.

Beatlemania-pitch screams punctuated the evening, whiplashing around the O2 whenever Eilish approached the edge of the stage; or when she sank to her knees during Therefore I Am; or when she picked up a fan’s Pride flag and draped it over her shoulders; and even when she struggled to disentangle a scrunchie from her jet-black pigtails. It was a reaction you’d typically expect for a boyband like BTS.

or One Direction - but while those groups whip up emotions with the illusory promise of romance, Eilish’s songs dwell in the uncomfortable messiness of early adulthood.