now, i know what you're thinking, you're thinking, "but monster-boy, you hate lady gaga with the hatred of a thousand suicide bombers! what are you doing going to see her live?!"
i will inform you to rest your pathetic excuse for an investigative mind, and quit your jibber-jabber. i would never stoop so low as to bless that demented harlot with my presence. no. i saw Paloma Faith at the shepherd's bush empire. and, i know, it's not the sort of thing i would normally even give two hoots about. 'twas a stab in the dark, a present for a friend whom i had no certainty would enjoy it. thankfully, though, both my hoots and my stabbing device paid off, because she was marvellous.
the lady gaga reference is not without relevance. paloma has been compared to the product-placing-sweaty-beast-cow more than a few times by celeb-loving journalists who don't really reserve too many column inches to fact. and in all honesty i spent quite a lot of the gig wondering what it was that made me vomit at the thought of gaga, but was slowly making me fall for the bundle of allure on stage before me. y'know, when supposedly one of them is the "british version of the other."
i posed the question to my companion (an ex-celeb journalist who went freelance to avoid having to talk to idiots), who summed it up with the following justifications:
because paloma faith has a personality.
because she looks like she's having fun, not just there to make money.
because she actually cares about whether the audience are having a good time.
because she makes good music.
because lady gaga's music is completely awful.
because she is actually engaging with the audience, instead of perpetuating the myth that celebrities are a different breed, or that they are earthbound deities.
that seemed like a good start. paloma was beautiful, wonderful, extravagant, but not 'other'. she was a performer completely engaged in making sure she put on an enjoyable show, for us.
and she was funny.
could you see lady gaga putting little amusing quips in between her songs?
quips, maybe. amusing... nope: because they would be quips written by a team of marketing professionals from walkers crisps or bodyform. or kwik-fit. or whoever the tramp-licker had sold her soul to that week.
this turned into a bit of a gaga-attack didn't it. not that that isn't admirable, but what i wanted to say was Paloma Faith is a joy. even if her music doesn't make you wet-at-the-knees, herself is just great. she has style and substance. she is warm and friendly. i like her.