Brian Dowling / The Honeyz / Supersister : London Astoria G-A-Y

The Big Brother winner effortlessly outshines the pop stars...

“Brian, Brian, Brian!” The chant is loud and relentless. It drowns out every record for half an hour before the Big Brother star’s appearance. It drowns out the disco grooves of Sophie Ellis “don’t call me Baxter” Bextor, it obliterates the new one by Louise “don’t call me Nurding” Redknapp, and it renders inaudible Ian “my name’s not actually Ian and the record company made up the Van Dahl bit to make me sound more European” Van Dahl. It’s a chant that’s been heard here at G-A-Y ever since they realised that Brian was ‘one of them’. The pre-fame Brian was a regular at the club and, unlike the slimy Josh, is being welcomed back as a hero.

He takes the adulation of several thousand strangers and acquaintances all in his stride. As his final days in the house showed, Brian NEEDS an audience. He is in his element, relaxed, silly, and razor sharp. He takes the mic to deliver a rendition of Supersister’s classic ‘Coffee’. Like Clive Dunn’s ‘Granddad’, the words are right but the tune is wrong. Thankfully the real Supersister soon take over, wearing their ‘We Love Brian’ t-shirts and hugging him like a long-lost friend, before performing new single ‘Shopping’. The t-shirts are removed and thrown to the crowd leaving the rather surreal sight of Supersister standing around in bras.

When Heavenli left The Honeyz, they re-recorded the debut album. Now that she’s back it might have been a nice gesture to reinstate it. However, The Honeyz are back with a brand new 17 (!) track album. Tonight though, they don’t stand a chance. Tonight is not about music. Between songs Celena addresses the audience. “Isn’t Brian lovely?” she asks and is greeted by cheers far louder than any of The Honeyz monster hits received. It becomes clear that we are in a parallel universe where Brian is Nelson Mandela and this is a tribute concert to celebrate his freedom.

So, after the new single, sung impressively live (but does anyone still care?) Brian, who has been assigned a round-the-clock bodyguard, returns with surprise guests. Narinder takes to the stage like a tornado, launching into her trademark ‘Nasty Boy’ and ‘Rolling’ dances. It’s hard not to imagine her on future nostalgia TV shows doing this “just one last time” and cursing the fickleness of fame. Amma is also on hand but does nothing. So it’s left to mentalists’ mentalist Penny to enter, stage right, trip and land on her tits. This is dyspraxia as an art form as she staggers to her feet, stockings laddered from ankle to thigh!

Fame is the strangest of demons. Tonight, two fairly successful pop groups had to bask in the reflected glory of a camp airline steward. Even the presence of Martine “sick note” McCutcheon in a hastily prepared ‘royal box’ fails to turn a single head. To G-A-Y’s loyal punters, Brian is the Messiah (and they should know, they’ve followed a few.)

Timothy Mark