Tuesday, 19 April 2011
Parade 'Ticking On It' as they rock Camden's KOKO
Yesterday I went along to the filming of the latest episode of T4's music show KOKO Pop at, yup, KOKO, in Camden. After a rather extended period of queuing (not all bad, I caught quite a tan in the sunny weather) we got let inside to act as the studio crowd. It's fair to say everyone was rather excitable, which I imagine is exactly what the show's producers want. To be fair, it was a pretty amazing line-up, so a win-win situation for everyone really.
Heading things up was Sophie Ellis-Bextor, who blew me away with how stunning she looked. I've always thought Sophie was pretty, but just WOW, she was smoking today! Freemasons collab Heartbreak (Make Me A Dancer) got the crowd suitably warmed up and it was great to hear beautiful new single Starlight too. Next up was Clare Maguire, who sung Shield And Sword, one of the highlights from her rather good debut album.
For me it was all about Parade though, this was why I'd come, after all. Having seen them live quite a few times now, I had a fair idea of what to expect, but in the intimate grandeur of KOKO, the songs really came alive. The sound quality was incredible, showcasing the band's harmonies to their very best. It's so easy for people to dismiss girlbands as being average singers, but what you get with Parade is five extremely talented girls who easily possess the considerable vocal talents to match the quality of their songs.
Fan favourite Perfume was first up, followed by Top Ten single Louder, both accompanied by some seriously hot dance moves. Again, the girls excel in this department - every move is slick and rehearsed, but enlivened with the innate sense of fun and sheer force of personality that the band bring. Parade's performances are all about having fun and enjoying yourself. They definitely won over a few new fans too, the girl stood behind me in the audience couldn't keep quiet, so full of praise was she for the band.
Then out came the piano for one of my personal favourites Rokstar - if you haven't already downloaded this from Parade's website then you really need to right now as it's an utterly beautiful track that, heard in a live setting like this, sends shivers down your spine. Completely enchanting. We were all in for a treat next as the girls gave us an exclusive premiere of new song Ticking On It. Again featuring Bianca playing piano, it was a fun and frisky up-tempo number infused with the spirit of the band - girl power at its very best.
Me with Parade's Bianca and Lauren after the gig:
The complete line-up/setlist was as follows:
Sophie Ellis-Bextor: Heartbreak (Make Me A Dancer), Starlight
Clare Maguire: Shield And Sword
Parade: Perfume, Louder, Rokstar, Ticking On It