I’ve never been to a show where the featured artist brought audience members on stage to have a cheesecake eating contest. Thank you, Lily Allen. Hopefully the winner is as thankful for his prize, a cheesecake. Oh, and a kiss n’ hug from our hostess with the mostest.
That wasn’t even the strangest thing about the night of song and
dance rump shaking. It’s been so long since I’ve seen a cigarette in person, that when I saw the smoke I actually thought at first Lily was some sort of half dragon half person chimera. She is a smoker. Big time. Half a pack. Puffs in between verses, sips of wine, a chorus sung with a lung full of smoke. Ah to be young and cancer certain. Here’s the catch. Contrary to what you may have heard about Lily, girl can sing.
She’s not a belter but she has a very pleasing well controlled voice and she and the band had some kind of mind meld going. They were right there to pick her up whenever she started to sing, and vice versa. The songs themselves were great live (with some fun improvisations that I’ll get back to,) but the audience weaned on her tabloid shenanigans didn’t seem as interested in the music as they were in her. They hung on her every charming word, even when she was pulling the world’s most redundant VH-1 Storytellers ever. “Not Fair” is about a guy who can’t satisfy her sexually? You don’t say? I thought it was about a crisis of faith.
Lily worked the room hard, practically begging the audience to get Natalie Portman in Garden State retarded but the closest she got was a one fingered salute during the epic Disneyfied kiss-off “Fuck You.” Hilariously I could not get Takako to give the middle finger, she found the whole thing crude. It was adorable.
Other parts of the set that stood out were the techno rumble change up in “Not Fair” and the addition of aggro guitars to the end of He Wasn’t There which took a quiet cheeky song and made it kind of epic and grand. My favorite song held up well, “Never Gonna Happen” had all the stompy circus appeal I thought it would and if I’d had more room or were wearing a bear costume I certainly would have been romping like a kid who drank too much Kool-Aid.
Overall, I thought it was a cool show. Lily, wine belly and all, is a cool lady. She has “it.” No one else could have taken that stage and pulled off the flirty pose she made at the part of “Who’d Have Known” where she sings “accidentally… called me baby.” No camera could have captured it, no words can describe it.