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Robyn and Kelis at the Music Box Over the Weekend

Fierce headliner, bad dresser: Robyn
Fierce headliner, bad dresser: Robyn

Robyn and Kelis
July 23, 2010
Henry Fonda Music Box Theater

When Swedish electro-popster Robyn and R&B singer Kelis announced a joint U.S. tour, a quiver of delight went through their fans. Both one-named celebrities have new albums, but their similarities don't end there. Both of them also launched their careers as teenagers, and are enroute to reinventing themselves by producing intelligent pop songs of substance.

Kelis
Kelis

Barring Robyn's 1996 teenybopper song "Show Me Love," the Swedish pop star has been an indie darling since her 2005 self-titled release. With her fierce, strong voice and no-nonsense songs, Robyn is the antithesis of the overproduced radio princess.  Her music is ear candy, but it's also lyrically and structurally sound--plus she has the vocal chops to prove it.

Kelis, on the other hand, wants to show that she's more than an R&B one-hit wonder (who can forget "Milkshake"?) Her latest,

Kelis looked amazing as well, in her silver Bo Derek wig and metallic pink jumpsuit, she sashayed up and down the stage, owning it. Unfortunately, she sang alongside backing tracks for most of her set (according to friends near the pit, she was lipsyncing to most of her songs). While her part of the show was a performance (she performed a mashup of "Milkshake" and Madonna's "Holiday"--with a bit of Major Lazer's "Pon De Floor" mixed in!), it wasn't as solid as Robyn's relentless bombardment of hit after hit. Still, everyone had fun. After all, who could resist dancing to an explosion of confetti at the end of a show?

Personal Bias: Robyn's "Cobrastyle" is probably on my list of top three best cover songs ever.

The Crowd:  Probably 90 percent of the audience were uber-cute gay men.

Overheard in the Crowd:
"Robyn and Kelis is like the gay man's Comic-con."
"This place smells like dirty cock."
"Is it just me or does everyone here look like Johnny Depp?"
(After Kelis' performance) "Can you believe that we get also ROBYN--after this?!"

Random Notebook Dump:

Robyn's performance was amazing--her outfit (high-waisted white pants with roses printed on them, a midriff, and a leather biker jacket), not so much. It looked like something Madonna threw away in the '80s.

Setlist:

Kelis

Intro
22nd Century
Millionaire
Holiday (Madonna cover)
Milkshake
4th Of July (Fireworks)
Home
Trick Me
Emancipate
Brave
Spaceship
Get Along with You
Scream
Acapella


Robyn
Fembot
Cry When You Get Older
Cobrastyle
Dancing On My Own
Who's That Girl
Dancehall Queen
The Girl And The Robot
None Of Dem
Don't Fucking Tell Me What To Do
Be Mine
Encore:
Show Me Love
Dream On
With Every Heartbeat




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