Sunday, 29 May 2011

Robots in Disguise @ The Old Queens Head, London, 26 May 2011

Rating: *****

Being a huge fan of Robots in Disguise, it's quite difficult for me to write an unbiased review of this gig. This was the fourth time I have seen the band live and was in a signifcantly different venue from all the other times. This time it was upstairs at The Old Queens Head in Islington, in a tiny crowded and warm room, with a tiny stage with no barriers.

We arrived fairly late on in the evening, so the only support act we managed to catch was Dimbleby and Capper. A solo artist with two dancers. The music was a mix of dreamy pop and electronic, making a beautiful noise you could happily dance to.

Robots in Disguise took to the stage shortly after 10pm, looking amazing in their almost identical outfits and making a fitting start with 'Wake Up'. They then proceeded to play a fairly short but fantastic set list. They played most of their most popular songs including 'Turn it Up', 'Girl' and 'The Sex Has Made Me Stupid' as well as playing a few tracks from their forthcoming album Happiness V Sadness including the title track and the new very catchy single' Chains'. The new songs sounded fresh and exciting, but still had the trademark Robots in Disguise sound.

After 'The DJ's Got A Gun' rather than actually going properly off the stage, they encouraged the audience to act like they had and give them a big cheer. This lead into a rather energetic performance of 'Arguements' which involved dancing on tables and pigbacking on audience members!

The whole gig had fantastic and fun energy to it, making everyone in the room feel involved. I think even if you weren't a fan, surely seeing them at this particular gig, you couldn't help but dance and fall in love with these fabulous girls.

Robots in Disguise's
new album Happiness V Sadness is released on July 11th, with the new first single, the very catchy 'Chains' being released a few weeks earlier on June 27th.

Were you at the gig too? What did you think? Did you like the new songs?


  1. Good review! I'll add a link to it from mine. I really liked the new songs - Chains is very catchy indeed. Looking forward to the new album even more now :).

  2. Glad you enjoyed it

    Franager x <-- RID's manager

  3. "Were you at the gig too? What did you think? Did you like the new songs?"
    Yes, I was at this gig, in fact those are my arms aloft while Dee & Sue went walkabout on tables in picture #2 above.
    What a great evening. I don't get out much these days, but having discovered RiD recently, I made the effort to travel down from Wokingham to the Old Queen's head to sample first-hand these girl's energy and enthusiasm. The venue is great, really friendly staff and intimate atmosphere upstairs.After a quick chat with the promoter (foxy) I managed to flog my spare ticket to a fellow fan for a fiver (my mate was unavoidably delayed) although sad I couldn't punt it on to the young girl who apparently showed up (according to a gorgeous brunette behind the bar) some 5 minutes earlier (sorry love!)
    Saw most of the support acts, my pick of whom were the Complete Short Stories - nice mix of sounds and a great singer. Air Castles played a nice set but I thought the lead guitar could have been louder. I said as much to the sound mixer blokey, who turned up the drums just as they went loud. He was eating his dinner at the time, though, so fair play.
    I chatted to Emily(?) selling the RiD merchandise (thanks for the badge), and got a pint in as Phil the sound man (and Mick Jones look-alike) heralded the arival of the Robots.
    This is the first time I have seen RiD live, and they stormed into Wake Up and The Sex has made Me Stupid before I could finish my pint and push my way forward get a closer look.[I may have stepped on some young lady's toes doing this, but the atmosphere was very warm and friendly so I think I was forgiven].
    Having watched videos of the songs from the previous albums on YouTube I was aprehensive they would come over a bit weedy, but they are quite tight now, and Gemma's drumming complemented Sue's melodic bass and Dee's angular guitar really well, and I found myself in a happy place where the spirit of X-Ray Spex and the Cure fused with the Slits and sheer bloody fun that glossed over the slow-down of the unfamiliar new songs for a storming set. I danced (badly). I clapped. I smiled. Sue sat on the young lad next to me's shoulders, and Dee clambered over tables as they romped through "Argument". And all too soon it was over. I miscalculated the amount of time I needed to catch the last tube, and left early, so missed getting my new RiD T-shirt (a girl's size, quite tight as it turns out) or CD signed by the girls. I smiled as I rode the tube to Paddington, and replayed fondly the evening's atmosphere as I trundled back to Reading. Top night. Quality experience. I'm now looking forward to the new album, and imminent future RiD live dates in the south of England. I would definitely travel to this venue again.
    I may even become a RiD groupie. Such is their power. Whatever these girls have, they have it in spades.