Last night saw another great gig at Ibiza Rocks, with Lily Allen topping the bill, supported by Bipolar Sunshine.
Bipolar Sunshine is the solo project of Manchester-based musician Adio Marchant, formerly from Kid British fame. Live he plays with a full backing band: keyboard player (plus occasional guitar), bassist and drummer. They played what could best be described as sunshine music. Their set was full of original poppy, funky, danceable tunes, which were perfect for a warm, breezy, Ibizan night as the sun went down. When the keyboard player switched to guitar, the pace quickened and they rocked it up a bit.
The biog on Facebook says: “Bipolar Sunshine is based on a surreal world where anything is possible, the stranger the better as long as it’s done with an artistic approach. A Home for the defeated romantic, the passionately curious but in the mist of all still can see the bright side to everything.” I rather like that approach and it was exemplified by the last song in their set, which was entitled ‘Love more worry less’, which was a great sentiment to leave us with.
A lot has happened to Lily Allen since I saw her bounce onto the stage at ‘Get Loaded in the Park’ on Clapham Common in 2006, wearing a hoody and her then signature prom dress and trainers. I enjoyed her performance, which was memorable because as she sang ‘LDN’ and the words “the sun is in the sky”, the stubborn English sun came out for the first time in the day. Since then, she’s grown up. She became a successful recording artist and a celebrity, had a couple of publicly-reported miscarriages, got married, had two children and retired from the music industry. But in 2013 she decided to make a come-back, and come back she did, with her cover of Keane’s ‘Somewhere Only We Know’ and her third album ‘Sheezus’ going to number one in the charts. So I was excited to seeing her perform again, in the relatively intimate setting of Ibiza Rocks.
She didn’t disappoint. Looking resplendent as she came onstage wearing a shimmery green cut-off bustier and a bright orange pencil skirt with full-length zip at the back and killer heels, she launched into ‘LDN’ to great applause from the expectant crowd. Next up was ‘F**K You’ which went down well and everyone started singing along. For recent single ‘Hard Out Here’, Lily was joined onstage by 4 dancers clad in very short denim shorts, who shook their booty’s ferociously to the tongue-in-cheek song. Leaving the stage for a quick costume change whilst the dancers entertained us, she reappeared in another glamorous outfit.
For the rest of the show she happily mixed early singles and songs from her first two albums with songs from the recent album. The dancers appeared intermittently, including for the latter part of ‘Smile’, which veered off into a frenzy of drum and bass. Not long after, she ditched her heels and spent the rest of the gig dancing around barefoot. For some of the slower songs she sat at the front of the stage, which was probably an attempt to rest from the heat of the night but was endearing to watch.
Throughout the gig she voiced concerns about having problems with her earpiece and not being able to hear everything clearly, and despite a change of equipment, this didn’t seem to help. However, it was fine from where we were standing. She put on a great performance: it was slick, entertaining and the crowd loved her.
Lily Allen, Hard Out Here:
Lily Allen, Smile:
Words & video by ClaireB
Click on images for larger versions
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