Keane and Lily Allen duet for Warchild

Plus Pete Doherty tells NME.COM he wishes he could have played charity gig

Keane and Lily Allen performed together at the Brixton Academy in London tonight (November 1).

The acts teamed up at the evening curated by the trio for charity Warchild, who they are patrons of.

The likes of the Pet Shop Boys, The Magic Numbers and The RaconteursBrendan Benson also played short sets at the headliner’s invitation.

Pete Doherty had also originally been set to perform, but had to drop out due to Babyshambles‘ commitments at the MTV European Music Awards in Munich tonight.

However, speaking to NME.COM earlier today, Doherty expressed his regret at not being able to attend the show.

“I would rather be doing the Warchild gig,” he explained. “I have to apologise to Mr Tom Chaplin, or Charlie Chaplin as he became known in our [rehab centre] Priory days together.”

Meanwhile, having declared herself a huge fan of Keane before the gig, Allen played a short set backed by the trio just ahead of their headlining performance.

“Hello, we’re Keane,” she joked. “Thank you for coming to this event for Warchild.”

Opening with her song ‘Smile’, Allen admitted “this is a bit embarrassing, I haven’t sung live in a while and I’ve forgotten the words to my own songs”, before moving on to ‘Littlest Things’ which she sang with help from a lyric sheet.

She then finished off with a ska-infused cover of Keane‘s first single ‘Everybody’s Changing’, declaring it “a really great song”.

Keane then went straight into their full headlining set, opening with ‘Crystal Ball’.

“The next song we’re going to play is about what tonight is all about. It was inspired by when we first got involved seriously with Warchild a couple of years ago,” Chaplin later explained, just before playing ‘The Night Sky’.

“We had to write a letter for them and Tim [Rice-Oxley, keyboards] got into the mindset of a child in a war zone. Having their childhood stripped away by all the bombs and missiles. But it’s also a song of hope, which is what Warchild are all about.”

For the evening’s climax Keane invited Brendan Benson back to the stage to play guitar with them on a cover of Queen‘s ‘Under Pressure’, before wrapping the night up as a trio again with ‘Bedshaped’.

Keane played:

‘Crystal Ball’

‘Somewhere Only We Know’

‘The Night Sky’

‘The Last Time’

‘Is It Any Wonder’

‘Under Pressure’


Earlier, the Pet Shop Boys played a short set, which they began as a duo before revealing a full backing band during second song ‘West End Girls’, and who then also joined them on ‘Integral’ and ‘Being Boring’.

Before them, The RaconteursBrendan Benson played an acoustic set backed by “these guys I found busking in the tube station”, namely Keane‘s Chaplin, Rice-Oxley and Richard Hughes.

The Detroit man played several songs drawn from his solo career, including a spirited version of ‘Matarie’.

The night also saw performances from The Magic Numbers, Teddy Thompson, Guillemots and – despite recently suffering a broken leg – Findlay Brown, who all played sets at the headliner’s request, while the likes of Elton John and Rufus Wainwright delivered video messages backing Warchild‘s efforts in warzones like Iraq.