Kaiser Chiefs // First Direct Arena, Leeds // 04.03.17
It might surprise you to hear that Kaiser Chiefs are touring arenas in 2017, but the Leeds natives are determined to make a comeback with their Stay Together Tour, certainly having enjoyed a renewal in popularity after lead singer Ricky Wilson’s appearance as judge on the TV show The Voice.
Starting out on a tiny school disco style stage in a salute to their early days, the band then moved on to a fully fledged production worthy of the richest pop stars on the planet. The showmanship displayed by a very inebriated Wilson certainly made up for the some of the poor choices in setlist order and composition. A fairly plain performance of ‘Good Clean Fun’ was saved by a moment of comedy gold, when Wilson fell headfirst over the rail into the crowd and stole the phone of a woman who was “too busy taking pictures”. However in a very classy act, he ran through the band, taking pics of each member and selfies with the crowd before handing her back the phone.
The high point of the show predictably came at the end, when ‘I Predict a Riot’ followed ‘The Angry Mob’. For what they advertised as an anniversary tour, it was certainly great to see Kaiser Chiefs transform onstage from electro-pop stars back into a rock band that actually got the crowd to mosh. But after winning us over, they sadly lost their grip on the encore with a poor choice of underwhelming songs.
With no particular pre-gig expectations, the show certainly earned a strong 7/10. Wilson’s showmanship certainly kept us entertained, although he might have been trying a bit too hard with the Tarzan rope swing over the crowd through the wall of smoke. Overall, it was a great night of partying like it was 2007 (teen).