Gig reviews: Mika @ Atelier, Luxembourg, 16.11.2012
Den Atelier in Luxembourg was one of my favorite venues during the tour. It looks bigger in the pics, in reality it’s tiny. Very small and club style. I was surprised to see a lot children in the audience. The crowd wasn’t partying the same way as at the Munich gig but it was loud and the atmosphere was good and warm. The stage was so small the setting could hardly fit on it and the band was playing everyone next to each other and in the end the choir was on stage less than planned. There was simply not enough space.
The queueing was relaxed and only a small group of fans arrived during the day. I flied from Copenhagen (spent my night there), went to the venue and met Karin, Miri, Bubbles, Renate, Sabine, Ulrike, Fran and Kate. We spent the day chatting and Karin had brought a lot of material to use as “decoration” during Underwater and Nico (Bubbles) draw some funny fish characters that made us laugh the whole day. So much fun and the result was hilarious. The gig was very international (beside locals there were fans from German, France, Belgium, Austria to mention just a few) and balloons, glow sticks and hearts on stage (made by French fans) added some extra color. The setting was extra simple though and Mika was wearing black trousers, white shirt and his green braces (striped socks belong to Curtis).
The original set list for Luxembourg:
Relax (with a new beginning)
Stuck In The Middle
Elle Met Dit
We Are Golden
Going trough the setlist with a few words. Mika started with the same short opening he already used in Paris. It’s exciting and fits really well with Relax (it felt a bit random with the slow and beautiful French Soleil song in Paris). Blue Eyes gives Tim a moment to be in a spot light, it’s an interesting and elegant song and warms the audience for Lola which is kind of the same style but even better. Billy Brown is familiar for every single person in the audience and even it’s almost too familiar it really must be there and it’s the moment for the whole crowd to start to dance and sing along. Popular is another interesting and entertaining new song (I personally like both Lola and the live version of Popular a lot) and makes people ready for two older high-energy songs Rain and Big Girl. I like the first part of the show, it’s nicely built as long as the first song is powerful enough (and Relax naturally is).
The second part is slower and extremely beautiful. Stardust (especially the way it’s done atm) is pretty and even quite tender, I love it. After that Underwater in a very emotional and powerful way, a bit like he used to do Any Other World earlier, and even I would like to hear it more gently I do understand the point because the audience takes it very well. Karen is always a treat – we can’t hear it often enough – and SITM in the end of the section is perfect. I must say I really, really like SITM the way it’s done these days, it’s entertaining and I love it how he often chats a bit before the song and how Curtis is playing in it. The underwater world prepared for Underwater looked really funny and Mika looked amused and stopped his singing to laugh for a moment in the beginning of the song. It’s definitely not a funny song so the effect was even more hilarious and the waves looked great even it was just random blue fabric and paper. I just couldn’t stop laughing, it was funny indeed.
The third section is the best part of the show. This is the moment when the audience is totally awake. Love Today is better than ever, it’s probably my very favorite part of the new show. It makes me think of movie scenes where the main character is peacefully walking on the street and suddenly sees someone standing and leaning on the building in front of him and turns around and there’s someone behind him too and he is trying to find a way out and you realize something dangerous and final is going to happen. That’s the atmosphere I get when the band starts to play around him and it sounds really strong and I love it and the feeling goes well through the whole song and in the end Max is doing his victory dance on the piano and the audience starts to jump and it’s just awesome. I’m so excited about this song.
After that he starts Drunk and it’s one of those perfect moments to chat a bit and teach some cheerful choreographies to the audience (and Drunk is really as good live as I thought in advance). After Drunk it’s time for EMD and a serious party time (EMD is a success even when the crowd is not talking French). Origin is generally speaking the best song on the new album and it’s the highlight for the whole show with some balloons and hearts and after that people start to calm down with Celebrate and Grace Kelly.
In the end it’s time for the last two songs. In Luxembourg he skipped Lollipop but added Toy Boy with Max and I really enjoy hearing Toy Boy now even it wasn’t my favorite songs during the last proper tour. I like the structure of the setlist but of course I would love to see him adding some new songs like Step With Me to the first section and Kids to the second and maybe ending the third one with Heroes like he did in Paris. He didn’t do Happy Ending in Luxembourg at all. It a difficult song and Mika’s voice has been a bit tired lately, sometimes we can’t hear him properly. It can be a technical issue too, but the sound was quite good in Lux. I have a few vids (Stardust, Karen, SITM, Toy Boy below).
Yes, that’s it I think. It was a good, small gig, I’m happy that I was there.