After an abstract support slot from comedian Andrew O’Neill - who manages to slide in a sly reference to John Lennon’s famous “rattle your jewellery” quip - Kaiser Chiefs bound onto the stage at London’s Palladium amid a storm of flickering lights, and launch into the title track of upcoming album ‘Stay Together’.
Kaiser Chiefs are charming in a shiny, family friendly way that gives bands cross-generational appeal. Their set tonight is proof of that, with the newer synth-pop songs set inoffensively alongside older indie tracks to the delight of an audience of beaming middle-aged couples. This is no slight - Kaiser Chiefs have carried on for over a decade thanks to this broad appeal. After ‘Every Day I Love You Less and Less’, ‘Ruffians on Parade’ and ‘Everything is Average Nowadays’, frontman Ricky Wilson flops down onto his monitor with the grin of a man who knows he has the best job in the world. “You haven’t followed Kaiser Chiefs for over ten years to hear the old shit!” he says. “Or maybe you have…in which case you’ve come to the wrong place.” He then starts in on synth-driven latest single ‘Parachute’.
Predictably, singalong indie classic ‘Ruby’ is a highlight, with a forest of arms reaching for the ornate Palladium ceiling. Less predictable is the cover of The Who’s ‘Pinball Wizard’ that they slip into easily, as comfortable as Ricky’s favourite spray-on jeans. After closing their main set with ‘Coming Home’, the band return to end the night with the storming crowd-pleaser ‘Oh My God.’ It’s easy to forget how many hits Kaiser Chiefs have, but tonight they’ve refreshed memories, with every second song a fan favourite. It turns out not everything is average nowadays after all.
Photos: Robin Pope
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