Live reviews

Sugababes - Nottingham Royal Centre

Such a pop band as the 'Babes' is a curious one. First album, 'One Touch' had some of the fabbest dirty pop this side of devilgate drive. Full of under produced hip-hop pop gems such as 'Overload' and 'Run For Cover', the album had me, and the critics hooked. Then...that ginger cute bird left. Soooo, with new record company on board and the get out of jail card (ie, recruit an ex member of Atomic Kitten) 'Freak Like Me' launched the new babes into the pop and roll stratosphere.

And so, this, their tour, rolled into Nottingham to a sold out crowd of 70% teenpoppers and 30% "people like me music-lovers". Strange how things pan out. The appeal of the Babes mark one, was that they looked bored most of the time, but delivered some simply ace pop. With smile-a-thon Heidi on board, they've gone down the "another pop group" route, and what a shame that moment on Saturday morning TV, and the next on a childrens afternoon show like so many other bands. Nothing wrong with that, especially when these girls can really sing.....boy they are angels, but no dirty faces, just the sight of three sub 20 girls not believing their luck.

The hits were all in tact tonight, but the dirtyness of album one has been dropped in favour of sheeny choreography and session players. Most of the set tonight came from their recent album, and sounded quite lovely, thank-you. After such a show, and their new found pop status, I'm watching to see whether the next album and tour can really establish them outside of their fickle fanbase into a longer career with people who buy albums on 'Q's' recommendation. Based on tonight's show the answer is , "no". But , bless em...they're young 'uns.

Parker Biro


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