Thursday, April 24, 2008

Wonky Pop Tour - Alphabeat / Leon Jean Marie @ Bar Academy Birmingham Tuesday April 22nd 2008

Wonky Pop anyone? Well, why not. Despite missing one of the bill (Frankmusic...maybe he was the wonky one?) this was well worth £6.50 of anyone's hard earned dosh. First up Leon Jean-Marie, last seen by dear old me warming up for pop pipkin Mika. I get the feeling that our Leon's a bit like a kid in a musical sweet shop (bear with me here). He can turn his hand to pretty much anything, Prince-y stuff like Stay Right Here, Madness tinged English pop...witness Bed of Nails, dirtier jazzy stuff a la Trusted You. It's all very clever and well done and he's a cracking performer, I just get the sense that he's still finding his true voice. This is probably likely to confuse your marketing bods, play listers and record buying public...hence the 'wonky' pop tour I guess.

Next up Alphabeat. No confusion here. Pop thy name is Alphabeat. Mince Alphabeat up in a Kendwood blender and you'd get a big bottle of Fanta. They're as pop as a weasel in a microwave. Yes, that's well pop. Like a dream 80's movie soundtrack brought to life (just check out Fascination...can't you just see Chris Penn...RIP...cutting a rug to that one?), they're so infectiously catchy it's impossible to resist. Blending bits of the B52's with Abba, Ace of Bass, Daft Punk...all manner of pop'll either love it and be stricken with a sudden urge to wear leg warmers and make up your own dance routines or hate it so much you'll cut off your own ears and feed them to Jade Goody. Guess which camp I fall into. Yes, at this very moment I'm going all Flashdance. Top marks for the PiL track by the way and bonus pop points for a joyous Digital Love singalong with LJM.

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