Its alright, still could have been better.
The tabloids have a had field day with many of the tracks on Lily Allen's new album but 'Everyone's At It', the show opener for the Glasgow set, has done more to get up the nose of more people than most. Supposedly there is a whiff of hypocrisy about Ms Allen railing about the frequent social drug taking that goes on these days but why can’t a little debate about drugs be taken seriously? Not that it worried most of the crowd as the young singer strutted her stuff over a blaring musical backdrop which left her vocals sounding a little bit muted on the initial number.
There is no doubt that Lily Allen is unashamedly pop and the early part of the set was light and frothy pop music albeit with a number of styles. The new album has given a much wider palette for Allen to take from, with the Calypso and dub related tracks giving her the perfect backing to deliver some killer choruses. As the band got into their stride, the singer upped the ante as her musical delivery came to the fore a lot more than the initial tracks of the evening.
It wasn’t long before Allen dropped a snippet of her Kaiser Chiefs cover 'Oh My God' and the musical magpie behaviour continued with 'Who’d Have Known', which even the singer herself admits borrows heavily from Take That's 'Shine'. What is overlooked is that Stephen Malkmus came up with the exact same melody nearly a decade ago on ‘Jenny & The Ess Dog' from his first solo album. Musical theft aside, its impossible to argue with the fact that Lily Allen can hold a tune and is a far more talented singer than her critics would ever give her credit for.
'LDN' got the crowd bopping away and reminded you of the earlier sparklier incarnation of the singer but was quickly followed up with another cover version with a take on the Dizzee Rascal and Calvin Harris No 1 hit ‘Dance Wiv Me’.
The continual karaoke offerings of Allen no doubts makes her audience feel as though she is on a par with them but on some level, it only serves to cheapen her and lower her stock. Allen is a songwriter of decent accord and yet the current sensation that everyone can be a star and live out their dreams by getting in front of others and belting out the work of others takes away from the fact that there's actually a lot more hard work involved, and you can bet that Lily Allen puts in a hell of a lot of hard work to make it look so easy.
There was a slow stop in the set when the acoustic guitars came out, the musicians perched on a seat and the tempo dropped, which didn't help the flow of the set and made you long for the jauntier early pop of her songs to return.
There is no doubt that it is easier to dislike than like and on the surface, Lily Allen makes it so easy to dislike her. The look of smug satisfaction every time she said 'Fuck You' started to grate, I mean, its not as if there can be any surprise left at the fact that Allen likes a profanity and a pop at other people. All this and a friendship with the despicable Mark Ronson should make Lily Allen on the list of folk you want to hate but despite it all, the singer is a charm and well worth following.
It is easy to draw parallels with Cheryl Cole, who was also a figure of hate for the British public but has also turned the tide of public opinion around. At least with Allen and songs like 'Its Not Fair, which sounds like rawhide, a not un-apt description for a song about sexual inadequacy, there are artistic reasons to appreciate the talent but God knows why Britain is loving Cole. Sure she is a pretty lass but we're hardly stuck for them and the countries new found love for her seems to be based upon a simpering buffoon role on a TV show featuring idiots and watched by idiots.
Lily Allen also lacks the dodgy background of Cole and there is no arsehole of a husband attached to Allen either. An undoubted win for Allen and if 'Dreams' before the encore didn't prove this, 'Smile' and 'The Fear' during the encore had the entire crowd singing and screaming along, with the two number one tracks being the highlights of the night. Ending the show with Britney's 'Womanizer' gave one final karaoke blast to the roaring masses which was disappointing given the two stone cold stunners that she offered before hand but like the best work of Allen, it left her audience thinking that they could do exactly what Allen does and at the end of the day, that’s what she provides as a pop star.