fri 22/06/2018

Lady Gaga, Twickenham Stadium | reviews, news & interviews

Lady Gaga, Twickenham Stadium

Lady Gaga, Twickenham Stadium

The wheels come off Lady Gaga's piano-motorcycle

As part of her 'Born This Way' tour, Lady Gaga does the hits in front of a demonic Disneyesque castleYoshika Harita/Kentaro Kambe

After Lady Gaga's concert at Twickenham last night, I asked some of the Little Monsters scurrying back to the station the name of the last song she had sung. The song she sang right after declaring that she had to bring the evening to an early end. The song she sang an hour after screaming that she would "sing her pussy off" and no one could stop her. Someone stopped her and no one could name it. (See Update in the penultimate paragraph.)

If someone had stopped her approximately an hour earlier, you would have felt shortchanged from such a brief evening but at least left on a high, perhaps after "Just Dance" or "Telephone" and a few of her odd postmodern Zodiac of costumes (yellow rubber nun-condom, white leather beekeeper, ram). Instead, the second hour proved an extended exercise in tedium and bathos.

If you're going to have a conceit - and Gaga is nothing if not conceited - you need to follow it through

The wheels really came off of Gaga's piano-motorcycle soon after the let's-meet-the-audience section, in which Little Monsters in the pit at the front chucked their billets doux at her and she talked about how much she loved us all. She sat at her piano and began a preamble to her song "Hair", about reinvention, before interrupting it to talk about how a record company suit had told her the Born This Way album was aimed at too small a niche (which tonight disproved).

Then began the tribute to Princess Diana. Words poured out about the Queen and victimisation, Amy Winehouse and songwriting, would we accept the song in the spirit in which it was given, she loved the UK, Princess Diana had always inspired her and her mother. I confess, I laughed. A lot. The ensuing song appeared to depend entirely on a pun between Di and die. After Diana, John Lennon and "Imagine". Then Freddie Mercury. It was like Desert Island Discs for the maudlin.

Had it started promisingly? Not really. After her perfume advert was shown a couple of times, the black stage curtain collapsed to reveal a massive castle, with turrets, battlements, walkways, crenellations, parapets et al. Unlike on her Monster Ball tour, which had had several elaborate scene changes and a vague plot, the castle sat there, large and expensive, for Gaga to move around without purpose. If you're going to have a conceit - and Gaga is nothing if not conceited - you need to follow it through.

Lady Gaga is born to ride in her Born This Way tour; credit: Yoshika HaritaWhereas at the Monster Ball Lady Gaga was riding high on popular and critical kudos, her pointed defensiveness last night set a sour tone: she talked about how this many people had come to see a "flop" album and noted how everyone knew the words to her earlier hits, of which there were annoyingly few.

She had every reason to be defensive: the songs from Born This Way were weak. Relying on the song-structure she perfected with "Bad Romance" (which we did get as a high point) or - to put it kindly - drawing on Eighties tunes and artists, they were uninspiring, inarticulately sung and generic. A pumping "Judas" served to point out the listlessness of the others. She was planning to end properly, some suggested, with "Marry the Night", which is another good 'un (if also derivative), but the man with his hand on the plug denied us this.

Update: I did leave before the encore of "Marry the Night" and "Edge of Glory", but it was not because I was eager to scurry home, as has been suggested in the comments: it was because Gaga said the show had to be cut short and I took that to mean when she finished, she finished. It doesn't change the substance of my review, however.

It made no difference to the majority of Little Monsters, who worshipped their cult-goddess. But as an ex-cultist myself, I felt disappointed: Gaga's moment has gone, snapped up by the musically forward, less portentous, more fun-loving and infinitely more tuneful Rihanna. Perhaps Gaga was sent to earth to redeem us, as she likes to think - but her ascension is now overdue.

  • Lady Gaga's Born This Way Ball tour continues for several more months, including 9 September at Twickenham and 11 September in Manchester
Whereas at the Monster Ball Lady Gaga was riding high on popular and critical kudos, her pointed defensiveness last night set a sour tone

rating

Editor Rating: 
2
Average: 2 (1 vote)

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Comments

i'm not sure we were at the same concert, Josh, but your article is factually inaccurate... - Gaga finished the gig tonight with an encore of The Edge Of Glory followed by, yes, Marry The Night. No man with plug to speak of... I'd suggest that perhaps, in fact, you were in a little bit of a hurry to get home?

Well said, this reviewer is talking absolute GaGa

I think you will find if u hadnt have left so promptly that marry the night and edge of glory were played and ended the show perfectly. Far from conceited, she is actualy one of the few artists that involves her audience. Lady gaga was excellent at the monster ball, fantastic at the born this wsy ball and ARTPOP will be just as good.

Hm, I'd need to disagree with the review. It is in fact the interaction between Gaga and the audience which adds an air of authenticity and a respite between each of the energy-packed songs. The interludes in which Gaga reassures and connects with her audience build an emotional tension which is unleashed when she screams her songs at the top of her lungs. Frankly, I'd say it was more like a rock concert than some pop show. I also disagree with your critique of the Born This Way songs- not only do they not maintain the Bad Romance structure (other than perhaps 'Judas'), but they may somewhat lack structure. There's a certain amalgamation of genres in each song which may muddy them a little too much sometimes, for example, the switch from electro to stadium ballad in 'The Edge of Glory', or the sugar pop of Judas' chorus into the dub-step delivery of the verses and breakdown. More importantly, so many of the songs on Born This Way appear to reflect her political preachings, which technically makes it a modern day protest album pushing a liberal agenda. Don't think I could complain. Love Gaga, but thanks for the review!

This person finds it within themselves to run home and post this joke of an article, (not more than an hour after the show has ended) without even having the decency to hang around for an encore. Far from ending the show on mediocre songs she in fact came back out and sang edge of glory and followed this up with, as panned...... marry the night.... Gaga did infact "sing her pu&@y off" for the people who could be bothered to hang around until the very end.

Your review is inaccurate, she finished the show with the songs you claimed she didnt do.

This is true! In your haste to post this inaccurate and bitter review you missed some excellent songs. A crowd of 55,000 very happy people and you suggest her time has passed, how many people wish to see your chosen 'art'?

She definitely finished with Edge of Glory & Marry the Night <3 Brilliant end to the show, unfortunately they had to finish by 10.30, but only a couple of songs were actually cut at all!! Should have stayed till the end, shouldn't you?!?

Very biased and rude review. I'm all for constructive criticism, but this has obviously been written by someone who has it out for Gaga and doesn't intend to review, but simply complain about her. I almost took it seriously until you said Rihanna is better than Gaga.

I agree with some aspects of this review. I did find that the staging on the Monster Ball tour was used more effectively and enjoyed the 'story' more. However, I really enjoyed the interaction with the crowd that Gaga does. Having seen both Rihanna and Gaga live I can say that the former is definitely not more

The show ended with a blasting Marry the Night after a mega disco edged Edge of Glory. Yes, she dropped some sadly missed songs (alehandro, pokerface, americano) owing to the curfew, and she was a wee bit defensive about her last year, but this was a confident show nonetheless. It was certainly better than the Hyde Park horror show starring old mother hubbard earlier this summer...

Did you actually go to the Gig ? It was fantastic & this little monster really enjoyed it, I think you need to give up the day job, Rihanna Phah lol

Harsh review. I saw the show and was astounded with how she managed to marry theatre with dance party and pull it off. What were you expecting? The latest album was fantastic - very inspiring. Again, not sure what you're listening to. Your opinion is yours.. but Rihanna is 'infinitely tuneful' compared to Gaga? That I disagree with. I like Rihanna but she can't be compared to Gaga. Rihanna's music is souless dance pop. Not a fan of her latest music.

Rihanna is more tuneful than Lady Gaga? Lolololol ....hahaha. This artivle written by a madonna fan , yes madonna(who cant hold a candle to Gaga)...

You clearly haven't been to many gigs because most gigs usually have something called an ENCORE! Had you not been so eager to be the first one on the train home you'd have heard her play MARRY THE NIGHT! Word of advice: take down the article. You look like an absolute idiot right now and everyone is laughing AT you.

This review is a load of rubbish, it is inaccurate. Also it was common knowledge that the curfew was 10.30pm and only a couple of songs were missed out!

Disagree with this numpty!

I left early because I was bored and disappointed with the whole gaga experience and agree with everything you said about it(except I not a fan of rhianna). I was at the monster ball at the O2 and loved it - but this was just so disappointing. Too much talking too many dull songs and as for the die and di tribute and trying to sing imagine felt she had totally lost her way and ran out of new material - so why not be a crowd pleaser and sing some of her fantastic old stuff? Won't be going again I am now an ex fan too

How can you review a show when you didn't even stay until the end? What a complete nana this person is? The Born This Way songs made the stadium shake - I had goosebumps for the entire show and I have seen about 15 pop shows in London. What a total numpty!

A review from someone who clearly wanted to leave the place even before it began. (he actually did leave early!) He's better off reviewing things he has an understanding of. Biased, rude, and unprofessional.

It was an amazing show and this review is crap! but I have to say I was annoyed that we didnt get the whole show and it was cut short. I felt short changed that we pay full price and not get the full experience and hits. I know this due to strict time curfew but if she really cares about her little monsters why did she not come on 20 mins earlier!!! I mean we waited long enough after the Darkness!!!!! I just think the promoter gets our hard earned cash and fail to deliver a full show!!!!

i agree with you , i felt shortchanged we left because GaGA said she had to cut concert short ..... i like thousands of others left at this point to then missed my fave songs ... i agree why so long between darkness and ga ga ??? if she really cared she would have come on stage on time ... also sound was bit muffled i much preffered monster ball in an arena ......

Gaga's stage show of Goth, rock and pop and costume changes lived up to its billing and this reviewers bias is typical of what to expect of today's journalists. The show lived upto the hype and and Gaga delivered in spades. In the interests of balance, I thought she became a bit self indulgent at times which lost even some of her most committed fans. As for finishing early because of time constraints, this is easily solved by starting earlier, you know what time the plug gets pulled so get on with it! A great night out, Lenons Imagine stopped the stadium, a great choice.

ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE! Her voice was flawless, she's a true artist and a true performer. Not everyone will understand Gaga's vision and her message, making it even more sad that they can only mock rather than learn to understand. I gave my all to her last night and it made it one of the BEST NIGHTS EVER! PAWS UPPPPP. And Rihanna... really?! She's just the pretty front for a production team and autotune.

The best gig I have ever been to. Gaga is a true performer, I challenge you to find better!! Been waiting for months to hear this album brought to life on stage, I will remember the night for a very long time. Live band awesome, set incredible, costumes inspired, dancing brilliant, Gagas voice - flawless, magical... I have no words left. Sad it was cut short but that wasn't her fault. Can't wait for the next one!!!

I respected your review until you favoured Rihanna over Lady Gaga. Rihanna is a talentless, music-industry puppet; she has no creative or artistic input in her career.

Ha ha, is the Lady Gaga fanclub spamming this site?

I think you may have been at a completely different concert to everyone else....or maybe you have not been to many in your life....everyone knows you never leave a concert until the lights come on!!!....she was incredible and the born this way album is amazing....I have seen lady gaga 4 times now and have every intention of going when she is touring in the UK again....only thing I would say is I'm not a fan of stadiums so would prefer it if she took this back to the O2....I am proud to be one of those annoying people (as you mention above) to know all the words to her songs....ie her real fans...I just feel bad that your ticket could have gone to someone who actually wanted to be there but couldn't get a ticket!!!

Gaga is following the tradition of some amazing artists - the spirit of legends like David Bowie and David Byrne of Talking Heads burns within her - and she performed with desire, skill and talent. I have not seen Gaga live before and speak as someone who loves music and performance and she did that tradition proud. The singing was amazing and the piano piece truly heartfelt. She is a star.

Awesome show, I ended being there due to someone dropping out, the band were tight the vocals superb and the stage show a mix of gothic and risqué was first class, not someone I would have thought of seeing, but turned out to be a superb evening

I have been to many concerts in my long years and cannot believe you have written a review like this. I suggest you get on the stage and have a go at the vocals, dancing and attempt to engage the audience as Lady Gaga did on Saturday night. I took my teenage girls to their first concert to see an artist that they have loved since she began to hit our scene. They were elated and as I attended unbiased, if Gaga does not mind my age, she has now inherited another Little monster! This woman was truly amazing. Bands like Take That although great use props as spectacle and do not give of themselves like Gaga did song after song-no real break. She used props as support not to disguise - Believe me, I am a retired performer and would know and am shocked you can upload a review having not seen the whole show. Shame on you

Everyone knows that you never leave a show until the lights come in. I agree wih Cat I am 48 and have been to quite a few live concerts and this is one of the best stageshows I have ever seen. Gaga can sing, she doesn't take herself too seriously, she is compassionate and gives 100% more than 2 hours on Sunday - and we were fortunate that it wasn't cut short and we had Poker Face etc. She is no cheapskate as the scale of the set special effects and dancers indicates. My 17 year old daughter was thrilled. Well done Lady!

I agree with this review and as a die hard fan came away at the end feeling disappointed and a little short changed, especially by not singing Poker Face but including weaker album tracks.

You are totally wrong in everything you say! I am in no way a gaga fan , i attended with my wife who is a die hard fan, I absolutely loved every minute of the performance. We had seen Madonna a few months ago, she did not interact with the audience at all, just sang the songs and complain about all seater stadiums....comparing the 2, Madonna and Gaga....Gaga wins by a mile. Shame you had a ticket , could have gone to someone who would appreciate a great artist and amazing stage show. Only gripe was the traffic chaos getting to the M25 after the gig

I went on Sunday, looked like a great concert was happening about 200 miles in front of me which I couldn't see because I was in the seated bit and Twickenham didn't put up big enough screens (even though I was right at the front, Gaga looked like a tiny Super Mario running around her castle). What an absolute joke paying £70 and not being able to see properly, especially for an artist where visuals are such a key part of the performance. I hope she never goes back to a venue like that again.

I am a 51 year old male and took my god daughter on Sunday and I thought she was fabulous! . It definitely helps if yoiu are only about 10 feet from the front of stage like we were. Well worth getting on the pitch 3 and a half hours early. The atmosphere was superb and from what I've read' Sunday was the better concert finishing with Marry the Night! I thoroughly enjoyed singing and dancing along!....Truth is I think I wanted to go more than my god daughter so the 210 mile journey home seemed nothing!.

Went to the show and it was so boring if you're not a Gaga fan. I hope she realise that there are actually some people who just want to be entertained. Some are adult enough that don't need special attention. We don’t need to a bleached blonde woman in costumes go on for 15 minutes with self satisfying lectures.

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