Kylie Minogue: Anti-Tour live review
As Kylie Minogue embarks on her stripped-down Anti-Tour for her "true" fans, we sent Kylie superfan Jasmin Shorter along to Hammersmith Apollo to see if a show filled with obscure B-sides could rival the majesty of Kylie's previous productions.
We have seen many incarnations of Kylie throughout her illustrious career: girl next door, indie, showgirl, vamp, car mechanic but last night she pulled off something completely different and wowed a crowd of her most loyal fans (myself included) in an intimate and stripped down concert at the Hammersmith Apollo billed as an Anti-Tour.
Kylie concerts have become increasingly gargantuous in recent years; her last spectacular Aphrodite Les Foiles travelled the globe with a plethora of dancers and elaborate sets, and a finale that featured a human water fountain and an Esther Williams-inspired aqua musicale number.
How could such a feat be topped? Only by stripping it back to basics and doing something completely different could she impress, and last night she more than pulled off the same wow-factor as her arena tours.
It's a celebration
Kylie is in the middle of celebrating what has been dubbed K25 - a celebration of her first quarter century in the music business in which she's been revisiting/reinventing a number of the past glories that make up her impressive CV.
As part of the celebrations she has kicked off a mini tour that promises to appeal to only her most ardent of fans. In a move that no other artist of her calibre could pull off, the setlist excludes the likes of I Should Be So Lucky, Can't Get You Out Of My Head and Hand On Your Heart and instead she performed only B-sides, long forgotten album tracks and demo recordings.
The highlight of the night for me was undoubtedly hearing album tracks from her 1980s Pete Waterman Ltd classics; my eight-year-old self was told that it was too expensive to travel to the NEC to attend a major pop concert and I'd long given up hope of ever hearing these songs performed live.
Kylie performed Tears On My Pillow (specifically because her Dad told her she had to), I'm Over Dreaming (Over You), One Boy Girl (kitsch rap still intact) and Gimme Just A Little More Time amongst others and the audience were thrilled!
Kylie comes full-circle
The original mastermind behind her early musical career Pete Waterman was in the house and Kylie was quick to thank him for all he'd done to help her start in the music business. The beauty of the evening was how honest everything seemed. Kylie has come full-circle and no longer seems embarrassed of the early songs that established her career.
The show was performed without irony and the understated arrangement brought out the raw emotions of the songs. Kylie has never seemed more at ease and this was reflected in her faultless performance; in particular when she hit the operatic top notes in Bittersweet Goodbye.
Other highlights from her treasure trove of forgotten gems included Made in Heaven (the 1988 B-side to Je Ne Sais Pas Pourquoi), Paper Dolls (the gorgeous B-side to 2000 comeback hit Spinning Around) and Things Can Only Get Better from 1990 album Rhythm of Love.
Kylie being Kylie, she could not keep it completely stripped back and when the show came to its roaring crescendo with a euphoric version of the title track to 1989's Enjoy Yourself album, glitter canons erupted from both sides of the stage. Here's to the next 25 years!
Watch Jasmin Shorter's take on Kylie's All The Lovers