Saturday, September 13, 2008

Goldfrapp – Ooh La La!

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following review was (kindly) written by my friend Marc Lallanilla, who attended a concert I'd have killed to see, if only I had any remaining time off from work this year!

Goldfrapp treated their fans to a psychedelia-inspired concert last night at Radio City Music Hall. Coming off the success of their latest release, "Seventh Tree," the band -- led by Alison Goldfrapp and Will Gregory -- got the crowd on their feet within minutes with glittering renditions of hits like "Happiness," "Ooh La La" and "Strict Machine."

Speaking of glitter, there was as much in the audience as onstage. The gay lads were out en masse, so there was no shortage of skin-tight shirts, big scarves and guyliner. And this is one sexy band -- both guitarists were decked out in snug white Greg Brady pants, while Alison lit up the stage in a fringed top reminiscent of swingin' 60s London.

It's not often you see a band that features a harp and violin as well as rock 'n' roll drumming, and the sound in the art-deco hall was perfectly tuned to show off the band's superb musicianship. Alison's vocals were luminous, whether she was using her trademark girlish whisper or breaking into a soaring, operatic aria.

But the energy level in the 5,900-seat auditorium wavered a bit on some of their slower ballads, and despite the big trippy graphics and glam fashion, you couldn't help but wonder if the show would have come off better in a smaller, more casual venue without a battalion of security guards. (The Pentagon could take lessons in crowd control from these androids. No dancing, you must have your ticket at all times -- hell, just going to the bathroom required passing through two security checkpoints.) -- Marc Lallanilla

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