Palladium: Cockpit, Leeds, Sunday, February 3
Musical atrocity or just good fun? The case for the defence…3
See, led by five-stringed bassist Peter Pepper and joined on drums by Rocky Morris (who looks like Kiefer Sutherland in The Lost Boys), guitarist Rostas Fez (who looks like Brian May with a skin-wasting disease), and keyboardist Rufio Sandilands (who just looks like a twat, truth be told), Palladium are the most aspirational, good time, damn fun pop band to swing around in an absolute age. Sure, with their feather boas and white chinos they’re as conventionally cool as Gambia in summertime, but you can bet that they’re the ones drowning in champagne and sexy cuddles come kicking out time. And with good reason. Their recent single – the caddishly divine ‘High 5’ – ‘White Lady’ and ‘Greatest Dancer’ dip into such oft-denounced influences as Hall & Oates, mid-era Police and, most bizarrely of all, Toto, while at the same time, being three of the best songs NME has heard since we were children, staying up past our bedtimes to tape Human League songs off the radio. Yet it’s within their best song, ‘Miracles’, and Pepper’s declaration of “I believe in miracles!/So let’s be hopeless, let’s be young!” that they truly articulate their wonder. It’s within such a beautiful, bashful slurge of futile joy that they tap into the age-old wonder of pop; that authenticity and credibility don’t really mean squat when you’re uppercutting the clouds, heart a-flurry and gawping at an idiot in a sun visor bashing his keyboards with his forehead. Ah, for alternate realities – you don’t get that shit with ‘Death Of A Disco Dancer’, y’know…
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