DP Review: Alphabeat & Palladium Live

At last the moment arrived which I’d been waiting for for 13 months: I got to see Alphabeat perform live! They are at that crucial time in their career when they are about to become either huge stars or has-beens, so it’s an exciting time to see them. To be honest I didn’t get the feeling that this band are about to rocket into superstardom, but they definitely won over a room full of Brightonians last night, and every new obsessive counts.

As the 6-piece took to the stage, I was overwhelmed instantly by the joy that emanated from them. They began with their first UK single (3rd Danish single) Fantastic 6, and the crowd, who began hesitant, gradually moved forward and seemed intrigued by these miraculously jolly and colourful Scandinavians. Their cuteness is just amazing – the lead male singer Anders SG was very attractive in the flesh (as well as groovily dressed) but still my favourite is adorable little Anders B. Can he please be my popstar boyfriend?

They played their 2nd Danish single (one of my top faves of 2007) 10,000 Nights of Thunder, album tracks What Is Happening and Boyfriend, and two new songs which I guess are called Stand Up and Touch Me Touching You, the latter being an absolute sensation – I’d never heard it before but there’s little I wouldn’t do right now to get an MP3 of it, and this was the track that got much of the crowd dancing and clearly having the times of their lives. This party atmosphere continued for their final track, new UK single Fascination, which some of the crowd knew the words to and even those who didn’t seemed quite enthusiastic.

Before I saw Alphabeat live I’d heard that you needed to do so to truly appreciate how great they are, and I found this hard to believe because I already loved them so much, but actually they are even better live than they are on record! It’s just that everything comes together, the look and the sound and their great charismatic performance. Their bright shiny energy reminded me of another band I will never tire of seeing live, I’m From Barcelona. Alphabeat are a little more simplistic (well, less balloons, but they were just the support act this time) than IFB but really these guys could just stand on a stage and do nothing and I’d be in love with them. I do hope they will succeed in becoming a success in the UK, if only so I can see a full concert, but even if they don’t I’m very glad I got to see them at all and they have definitely found their place in my heart as one of the best pop groups in recent times.

Now to a subject I’m rather less enthusiastic about… Palladium. I don’t want to be too harsh on them because to be fair there are so many bands much worse than them, but the fact that they’re almost very good makes their actual not-that-goodness all the more disappointing. I’m a big fan of The Feeling so in theory I should enjoy this band, but there is something wrong with them. They are uncool, yet not in a jolly ‘who cares’ kind of way, but actually a bit embarrassing. There are a few good points though, and I suppose I should point them out. Hi-5 and Happy Hour are quite good songs and they have one really good one called Get It Right. The lead singer is quite likeable and sings a bit like the lovely guy from Passenger, although he gurns far too much, but on the negative side again the keyboardist is insufferably annoying.

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