There is nowhere more soul destroying for a concert than the desolate Hall 10 of the Asia Expo Arena. Still, it’s Lily Allen and expectations are high. As always, getting anything decent to eat or drink was futile so I headed straight into the main hall. On stage a deejay was mixing a variety of sounds. The crowd seemed a bit thin on the ground but the atmosphere, nonetheless, was good. It wasn’t long before Lily Allen appeared, starting her set with ‘Sheezus’. She swiftly segued into ‘Not Fair’ and had the crowd singing along with her.The lighting and visuals were superb and Lily’s stage presence and interaction with the crowd were, as always, fantastic. But where was her band and where were the dancers? She performed several more songs from her latest album, ‘Sheezus’, along with a smattering of her older hits. Surprisingly she didn’t sing ‘Air Balloon’ and unsurprisingly turned down requests from the audience to sing ‘Alfie’. The visual arrangements continued to impress and there was a fun moment when she brought two hapless audience members up on stage to sing with her. The final song ’Fuck You’ had everyone singing along raucously.
It was a good concert but it did feel odd seeing her up there singing to a backing soundtrack mixed by the on-stage deejay rather than with a band. To be honest, it felt more like a glorified karaoke session than a real concert. Was this cost cutting on the artist’s behalf or by the promoter? If I had known in advance, I probably wouldn’t have bought a ticket for the concert. Is this a sign of the times? Will more artists coming to HK do the same and leave their band behind?
Lily Allen Live in Hong Kong 2015
When: 8pm, 31 January, 2015