La Roux in The Academy on 20th November 2014
It’s been a long time since we first heard La Roux‘s brilliant debut album – five years in fact. The group finally managed to muster a follow-up album this year in the form of ‘Trouble In Paradise’ after years of difficulties. Fortunately, the record proved to be an impressive piece of work marking a growth in the band’s sound, and a full-house turned out to hear La Roux in the flesh.
Let Me Down Gently, a relaxed slow-burner of a track, eases us into proceedings before Fascination livens things up. The songs pulse with a steady throbbing beat, and the guitar and basslines create a decidedly funky backdrop for the rich synths. Kiss and Not Tell and the fantastic In For The Kill are the early set highlights, with Elly Jackson’s falsetto impressing on both and the catchy riffs and hooks make for a highly engaging listen.
I’m Not Your Toy stands out as another quality tune, but as we progress through the show there is a sense that the band are taking it fairly easy up there. Sure, Jackson is bouncing about on her feet, but the songs are quite chill and laid-back, and it feels as though the band are going through the motions somewhat. Jackson’s rudimentary engagement with the crowd does little to change this feeling. However, the band do up the energy levels for Tropical Chancer and Uptight Downtown, with both tracks featuring a passionate instrumental section that sees some good interaction between Jackson and her backing members. Tonight is the last night of the group’s tour, so the brief mid-set lethargy can perhaps be forgiven.
The band really excel on the encore, with the primal drums on Tigerlily driving the track on, and an interesting breakdown that sees all lights extinguished except for those focused on Jackson’s face. The impossibly catchy Bulletproof ends the show and the group’s glorious signature song still sounds amazing, with Jackson’s falsetto really shining through. Parts may be patchy, but La Roux deliver a quality performance overall.