Monday, 16 May 2011

Florrie and Paradise Point at The Borderline - 14 May 2011

Paradise Point

This is the night of the Eurovision Song Contest Final. I thought as a result that this place would be as empty as a Lib Dem promise.

But no – As I walk into The Borderline I find the support act just starting up and a noisy and anticipatory crowd.

Paradise Point are a 2011 take on classic boy bands such as Duran Duran, Spandau Ballet and even ABC. They surely must have been made in some manager’s laboratory – the last time such favourable DNA came together was about the time that a pair of prehistoric slime moulds thought it would be cool to cozy up and form a fish’s backbone.

What is amazing is how good this band is. Singer Cameron is a macho hunk in a pair of trousers that leave no doubt that he is very happy to be here. Is he excited? Well, when he turns sideways he could knock your pint out of your hand.

Next to him is Adam, a blond wisp of a guitarist in a stripy top and to the right a young bassist who looks magnificently cool and strangely familiar. My notes of the evening described him as a ‘Spandau Clone’ but further research marks him as even more special. Young Roman Kemp is the son of Martin and is the spitting image of his Dad. Hurrah for genetics! The family business is in good hands.

Basically, this lot are sex on legs and even if they weren’t actually any good they would still find it hard to walk on stage without being shrieked at.

Fortunately their music is excellent too. These are real pop gems – certainly 80’s inflected, but delivered with a whomp and panache that would put a lot of other acts to shame. ‘The Only One’ is a track that is going to get them a lot of attention.

I’m glad to see them here. If they play their cards right their next stop is the O2 Arena dodging volleys of young girls’ underwear.

The bald description of the headline act is discouraging. Florrie is the sometime house drummer for Xenomania acts such as Girls Aloud. Tonight is her chance to step out of the shadows.

She is certainly striking to behold – a sexy version of a prim, buttoned-up nurse from a Sixties Brit flick, a rail thin Julie Andrews with a touch of school mistress. The epitome of nice but secretly naughty.

Her voice is not the strongest, but she makes up for this with a set of percussively based songs with infectious rhythms that really get the crowd going. I am delighted that the second song of the evening is entitled ‘Call Of The Wild’ and is a bouncy drum ‘n’ bass flavoured thing.

Florrie occasionally flirts with a guitar, but acquits herself really impressively on a stand-up drum kit. She bops around it, bashing various bits of percussion and having a high old time.

Her set gets better as it progresses (‘Left Too Late’ is a cracker) and to my ears the act that she most closely resembles is Scandinavian DJ/popstress Annie – and none the worse for it.

Tonight has been an educational reminder that there is a genuine difference between pop-inflected rock acts and the pure uncut mother lode itself. This is Pop with a capital ‘P’.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great gig at the borderline. Loved florrie. Paradise point were simply fantastic.