You like “Just Dance.” It doesn’t matter if you’re the most bent-up Bob Dylan fan, or an early Madonna connoisseur, or a Nine Inch Nails worshipper; you have heard “Just Dance” and either tapped your foot or twirled around in your underwear a few times. And for those of you who haven’t heard it, the 60s are over and acoustic guitar just isn’t cool enough anymore. But that’s OK, Lady GaGa has something to entertain you with.
Most people who hear GaGa are going to think that she’s just another copycat dance/pop chick, which isn’t all that unfair considering that practically all the songs on her album The Fame generally have that dirty electro disco sound. However, while they may seem heavily produced, GaGa has genuine talent. She starts off the night in pop diva mode, with a weird opening montage straight out of A Clockwork Orange projected onto a screen and then a smooth transition into “Paparazzi” followed by “LoveGame”, “Beautiful, Dirty, Rich”, “The Fame and Money Honey”. These are all songs that have a good beat, fun choreography and if you didn’t catch the theme, lyrics about glamour, fame, money, etc. It’s exactly what you would expect to hear at a Lady GaGa concert. Then, however, things took a turn for the whimsical.
After throwing in the song “Eh Eh”, which is just the kind of fun, flippant love song you’d expect to hear while cruising through the country in a convertible, or perhaps floating lazily down a river. Any number of relaxing activities could have “Eh Eh” as their theme, and it seemed a little unusual after the hard glamour of the money and fame-driven portion of the concert. Ultimately, it was right before a costume change, after which there was the coolest transparent piano filled with bubbles you have ever seen placed on the stage. Lady GaGa walked out in what could only be described as a bubble bikini, with bunches of blow-up clear bubbles all over it. Seeing this, it’s hard to know what song is going to be played next. Will it be a cover of Nena’s “99 Luftballons”? Or perhaps she was inspired by Bjork? In the end, she starts on what could only be described as a saloon-style rendition of “Poker Face”, the single that is quickly taking over “Just Dance”. It was simply GaGa singing with this almost silly sounding upright piano, until she played to the crowd and let them sing, which they did quite admirably for the entire song. In fact, their singing was so enthusiastic, she joked that they didn’t need her and she was, “Just a blonde bitch in a bunch of bubbles,” which to be fair was currently very true. She ended her stint on the piano with a new song called “Future Love”, which describes her affair with the perfect man, an android; this ran along with her current fascination with the year 3009.
At the end, she topped off the performance with a heavier, electro remix of “Just Dance” where her DJ, appropriately named DJ Space Cowboy, whipped out the beats for some excellent dance choreography. After a quick costume change into her self-described “bondage fraeulein outfit”, GaGa performed “Boys, Boys, Boys”, somewhat surprisingly. It’s a bit sillier than expect for an encore, but it was perfect for the jump into the original version of “Poker Face”, which caused the crowd to go wild in the end.
Lady Gaga has been compared to other supposed pop divas, like Christina and Madonna, but in the end she’s doing something different. She started with electro-clash dance music, the songs about glamour and sex. She admitted it was what she knew, so she sings what she knows, and she doesn’t lip synch. She was up there singing and dancing, unlike some other pop artists. Lady Gaga is talented, even if it’s hard to tell sometimes with the heavy-handed production in her songs. So enjoy her music, openly and fully clothed (if you wish)!
Concert Review By: Nicolas Bunzmann