New Zealand born Phillipa Brown embarked on the Blue Eyes tour which was a short jaunt around the UK (and Ireland). The first date of this Ladyhawke tour saw her play at Concorde 2 I Brighton. I booked this date because I regrettably could not make the London date. I arrived at the venue around 4pm and what I found surprising was the fact people didn’t turn up until 30 minutes before the doors opened at 7pm. When the time came people started to make their way into the venue only to see that a black curtain had been drawn to stop people going into the main space (Swiss Lips were still sound checking). At 7.30 the curtains were pulled and people started to enter. It was 45 minutes until the only support took to the stage and this being Swiss Lips who sang promising electro pop music. I look forward to getting my hands on the début album and I most definitely see them again in the future.
“Hello” Pip said the moment that she graced the stage. The evening kicked off with something old and this being the infectious Back Of The Van. This was a powerful tune which was rather synthy. It reminded me of Madonna in the 1980’s. Back Of The Van was a perfect song to open with because it was a real crowd pleaser. “Thank you so much for coming to the show on fireworks night. Thank you for having me” a humble Brown said to the audience before the latest single from Anxiety and this being Blue Eyes. This was one upbeat song and it was delivered strongly. The verses were superb and its lyrics were infectious especially the Na Na bits. Girl Like Me followed straight after and there was some really impressive guitar playing throughout this tune. Girl Like Me was delivered impeccably and had some superb steady paced lyrics. The title track of the sophomore album was next and this being Anxiety which had an electro feel. I really adored its lyrics because it feels like it is a personal song from its content. Fans of Ladyhawke would know that Phillipa was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome. Its opening line is “I take a pill to help me through the day” and it could refer to Anxiety issues. Professional Suicide followed on. This had a slow start and you could notice the electro ness to the song. But both the chorus and the na na nas were really infectious. This old song was delivered to perfection. The very beginning remind me of I Just Love You More by Kate Nash. Magic was next up. Pip wrote this song when she first moved to London and is a pining love song. This song had a beat to it and everything gelled together perfectly. Now I really liked this song because it was infectious as well having a dreamy melody. Dusk Till Dawn came straight after and as well as having brilliant lyrics it was also delivered at a fast pace. The tune was utterly infectious and had a wonderful chorus. Plenty of people around me were going crazy for this old song. Black White & Blue was the lead single from Anxiety and was the next to be played. Even though Black, White & Blue was extremely heavy due to the guitars/ keys/ drums the song is actually very smooth. The lyrics gelled perfectly to its melody.
“Here’s another song” Pip said before introducing the next song as The Quick & The Dead. At first it started off with a heavy drumbeat then Pip started to sing this fantastic song. At first it started off at a steady pace then the infectious chorus kicked in. “How did you like my tambourine solo? That’s the highlight of every gig” Brown then joked before diving into another old song and this being Love Don’t Live Here. This was one powerful song due to both electric guitars and drums making it feel heavy. Still this smooth song had superb lyrics which were delivered to perfection. “We’ll slow it down a touch, not too much” Pip then said before Cellophane. This was rather soft and it was played at a slower pace compared to other songs that had already been played on the night. I really liked its swooning chorus. Another Runaway was next and this taken from the self titled début album. There was an electro/ synth vibe to this song which worked wonders. Another Runaway had infectious lyrics which were faultlessly delivered. “That’s the first time I’ve played that song in 3 years. I was like oh god I can’t remember the lyrics” Brown then revealed to the crowd. Better Than Sunday was a power pop song which I found to be rather infectious. I loved its chorus where Pip sings that Monday is better than Sunday. It was then onto Vaccine. One line of this song is “Who’ll Be My Vaccine, I’ll Be Your Inbetween”. This song was fantastic and has some brilliant verses. It was then onto Sunday Drive. This being the 2nd single from the sophomore album Anxiety. I found this fast paced song to be rather breezy with infectious smooth verses and a punchy chorus. “I know lots of you have probably already seen me play. I always hate the encore thing so I know lots of you have seen me before. So I’ve got 1 more song but it’s not really. So I pretend it’s my last song and then I go off like it’s all over and then hopefully you want to hear more then I come back on and play some more” Pip said before capping off the night with Paris Is Burning. This was really infectious and it’s begging to for you to sing along to it. Pip wrote this song after a long weekend in Paris. The best part of this tune had to be its chorus. Pip then left the stage only to return moments later. “I have more songs. I’m going to play a cover now” Brown said before tackling Jefferson Airplane cover White Rabbit. This was an extraordinary take on this song and Pip made it her own. The vocal performance was spot on. It was then straight onto Gone Gone Gone which was the penultimate song of the night and it is also the last track on the album. This number was extremely powerful and had some brilliant lyrics. “Thank you guys for coming to the show tonight” Pip said before thanking the rest of her amazing band. “This song is for all you guys” Brown said before ending with the furious paced My Delirium. Bundles of energy oozed from this infectious tune. The atmosphere was simply electric, people were going wild for it. I really liked its thumping chorus.
Back Of The Van
Girl Like Me
Dusk Till Dawn
Black, White & Blue
The Quick & The Dead
Love Don’t Live Here
Better Than Sunday
Paris Is Burning
Gone Gone Gone
OVERALL: As to be expected I really enjoyed myself at this gig. I have a lot of admiration for Pip ever since the day I met her at the 100 Club show last year (I did actually see her back in 2009 attending Charlie Ash at the Rhythm Factory, Whitechapel but was to shy to approach her).
Even though this was the Blue Eyes tour you could see it as being the Anxiety tour as well as the album is finally out. What was sung on the night was utterly superb and the new tracks are outstanding (I especially liked Girl Like Me). I also liked the fact the set was a mixture of both material from Anxiety and self titled album Ladyhawke. Pip sang 9 out of the 10 songs from Anxiety and the one that wasn’t performed was Vanity (which was listed on the set list but Brown chose to sing Another Runaway after 3 years). Human (the Anxiety hidden track) was not showcased as well.
As this is Pip’s last UK tour for a while I am upset I cannot attend the final night at The Forum. I just hope it is not another 4 years until she is back with a brand new album.