WORTH A LOOK?: ****
TRACKLIST: NeverStop; Love Invention; Digging Deeper Now; In Electric Blue; The Beat Divine; Fever (This Is The Real Thing); Hotel (Suite 23); Subterfuge; Gatto Gelato; So Hard So Hot; SLoFLo
SETLIST: Hotel (Suite 23); Love Invention; Believer; Digging Deeper; In Electric Blue; NeverStop; Number One; The Beat Divine; Impossible; Anymore; SloFlo; Gatto Gelato; Strict Machine; Rocket; So Hard (So Hot); Ride A White Horse; Fever (This Is The Real Thing)
The Love Invention is an early contender for album of the year so far and this was our 1st visit to this new underground and modern Soho venue for Alison Goldfrapp’s debut solo gig.
- Read on for reasons including where to see her next at an outdoor gig in London in July
Given the strength of the material we would have respected her as Boldfrapp had she stuck to the album and not veered into the greatest hits of the duo which shares her surname because we felt it was a gig that could have rested on the shoulders of the new LP quite comfortably.
Alison has famously had an imperious, ice queen demeanour and tonight seems on good, if a little cold, form although an early sound problem sees her apparently scowling at those technicians struggling to meet her standards.
There’s a lack of engaging banter from the stage but this isn’t unusual and Alison seems genuinelly pleased to see us and so she should be because collaborating with dancefloor DJs on The Love Invention seems to have reinvigorated her and if you loved Goldfrapp for the big hits and bangers this is the album for you.
The extended version of the album features her single with Royksopp and Impossible was a song of the month for us way back when in February 2022.
A year later Claptone’s remix of Digging Deeper was a song of the week for us and we said: ‘Musically Claptone appear to be drawing on 90s hits like Macarena, Spice Girls’ remixes or Whigfield hits for the keyboard sounds without ever quite apeing the full-on commerciality of any such propositions.
‘The lyrics, such as they are, appear to find the former frontwoman at a bit of a career crossroads which seems apt as she muses: ‘Everything has changed’ and ‘I’m Digging Deeper now.’
Paul Woolford’s remix of Fever also saw it being crowned a song of the week and we said: ‘Here on this follow-up there’s a moment towards its close where it is so disco fantastic with lyrics including: ‘This is the real thing here’ and ‘We’re caught in a wild affair’ that we get actual Donna Summer dancefloor vibes.’
Elsewhere on The Love Invention Alison experiments with voice effects and there’s a slowed-down feel on NeverStop which makes us think of 80s 1-hit wonder Will Powers.
Both So Hard, So Hot and the album’s title track are real pop highs and Alison has never sounded so at home on the dancefloor even in her band’s prime.
We were less keen on the friendliness of the venue’s staff at HERE with an especially over-enthusiastic coatroom meaning the space at this sold-out gig was even more at a premium and we found ourselves watching Alison on screen behind a pillar at many points.
Minor gripes aside, we look forward to seeing Alison next at Somerset House in July as she is 1 artist whose other-worldliness is enhanced by any outdoor setting.
- Main picture via Facebook courtesy Alison Goldfrapp Tickets
- Have you seen a Goldfrapp show before and what do you think of this album?
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