Live at Leeds Metropolitan University on Monday, 17th March 2003
The turnout is poor, but maybe everyone's being good at home preparing their riot plans for when the war starts. Those who are there, especially the men in the audience, seem to largely share the male part of the band's penchant for the Beckham/Strokes hair styles that have been popular of recent times.
When they come on following some intro tape featuring an electro version of Paul McCartney, they all look cool in their suits (uniforms?), especially the two female vocalists and they start with the first track off Light and Magic, True Mathematics, which is excellent.
Live, the band's a six piece with a real drummer, which is something of a surprise. Shouldn't they really have the courage of their convictions and go for a drum machine over flesh and blood? There's not many bands where you wish they were less alive and more machine but maybe Ladytron are one of them.
The sound's not fantastic but is it ever at LMU? Fortunately it doesn't matter too much as the gig progresses with songs from the first two albums featuring equally and pre-encore highlights include both the recent singles Seventeen and Blue Jeans. They get through the set at a viscous rate and are trooping off after only forty odd minutes. The thought occurs that nearly all their songs could be stretched to twice the length and still be awesome. Some things do bare repetition.
When they return you get the feeling that the main lead singer (Helen?) is dying to let go and ROCK and she finally she does on The Way That I Found You and on the very last song, Oops(?), that is played to a half empty house following a large proportion of the audience's precipitate exit at the end of the first encore. Those that remain care not because whatever she does she's bloody marvellous.