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Review from Dingwalls, 23/11/06


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Forgive me if this has been posted before, but I just came across this review - thought it worth sharing:

 

 

"Mika @ Dingwalls, November 21

 

Thursday, November 23 2006, 15:29 GMT

 

By Miriam Zendle, Music Reporter

You may not have heard of Mika before, but trust me when I say you would travel for this man. Although his denigrators have called him derivative, those who have seen him perform live will be able to attest to his skill with a piano and a microphone, and since pretty much every artist I know will have used an influence of theirs in their music at some point, it's a bit of a pointless criticism.

 

23-year-old Mika has yet to 'properly' release a single, though he has just put out digital EP Dodgy Holiday, which is available on iTunes, and previously has sent 500 vinyl copies of Scissor Sisters-esque dance track 'Relax' into the world. It's not surprising that his regional gigs thus range from 80% capacity to 20 people stood around the walls of a small venue, tapping their toes nervously. However, as with many artists, Mika's main fan base seems to be in London - at least, it's the easiest to travel to for many fans, and Dingwalls, a small-to-medium venue in the heart of Camden Town, was totally and utterly packed out for this gig.

 

Mika's band form an integral part of his performance, and it's clear the group are very close - no doubt helped by long hours spent on a tour bus heading up and down the country in search of fans. Guitar player Marti duets with Mika on most of the tracks, utilising his gorgeous falsetto skilfully against Mika's own lilting tones, while drummer Cherise manages to retain huge amounts of energy and keep smiling despite what must be an exhausting set. Finally, keyboard player Luke and bassist Mikey complete the band, and it's hard to imagine a different lineup, even at this early stage - the bond is clearly there and it really, really works.

 

Every song on the set list was received well by fans who already knew all the words, or had even dressed up as characters from Mika's songs. The set was a bit too short, but as Mikey earlier said: "That's all the songs we have!" If you catch an artist this early on in his career, you can't expect him to have U2's repertoire! Mika's voice was strong, he was clearly relishing being there, and everyone in the audience seemed to feel the same. One high spot came when an anonymous audience member yelled at Marti to sing the famous Proclaimers song. They dutifully did so - but not knowing any of the words, it descended into a shambles that left everyone laughing.

 

If you can get along to see Mika, you really should. He's fresh, funky and different - and he'll set your toes tapping like no other artist can."

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Forgive me if this has been posted before, but I just came across this review - thought it worth sharing:

 

 

"Mika @ Dingwalls, November 21

 

Thursday, November 23 2006, 15:29 GMT

 

By Miriam Zendle, Music Reporter

You may not have heard of Mika before, but trust me when I say you would travel for this man. Although his denigrators have called him derivative, those who have seen him perform live will be able to attest to his skill with a piano and a microphone, and since pretty much every artist I know will have used an influence of theirs in their music at some point, it's a bit of a pointless criticism.

 

23-year-old Mika has yet to 'properly' release a single, though he has just put out digital EP Dodgy Holiday, which is available on iTunes, and previously has sent 500 vinyl copies of Scissor Sisters-esque dance track 'Relax' into the world. It's not surprising that his regional gigs thus range from 80% capacity to 20 people stood around the walls of a small venue, tapping their toes nervously. However, as with many artists, Mika's main fan base seems to be in London - at least, it's the easiest to travel to for many fans, and Dingwalls, a small-to-medium venue in the heart of Camden Town, was totally and utterly packed out for this gig.

 

Mika's band form an integral part of his performance, and it's clear the group are very close - no doubt helped by long hours spent on a tour bus heading up and down the country in search of fans. Guitar player Marti duets with Mika on most of the tracks, utilising his gorgeous falsetto skilfully against Mika's own lilting tones, while drummer Cherise manages to retain huge amounts of energy and keep smiling despite what must be an exhausting set. Finally, keyboard player Luke and bassist Mikey complete the band, and it's hard to imagine a different lineup, even at this early stage - the bond is clearly there and it really, really works.

 

Every song on the set list was received well by fans who already knew all the words, or had even dressed up as characters from Mika's songs. The set was a bit too short, but as Mikey earlier said: "That's all the songs we have!" If you catch an artist this early on in his career, you can't expect him to have U2's repertoire! Mika's voice was strong, he was clearly relishing being there, and everyone in the audience seemed to feel the same. One high spot came when an anonymous audience member yelled at Marti to sing the famous Proclaimers song. They dutifully did so - but not knowing any of the words, it descended into a shambles that left everyone laughing.

 

If you can get along to see Mika, you really should. He's fresh, funky and different - and he'll set your toes tapping like no other artist can."

Love the article! :wub2: great Miriam! :thumb_yello:

 

Thats the Proclaimers song they asked him to sing: 500 miles

 

Edited by mari62
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Mika @ Dingwalls, 21/11/06

By Carys

 

I’m usually fairly dubious about going to see bands that I don’t know a lot about, so when my friend Emma ‘myspaced’ me and told me she had free tickets to the Mika gig at Dingwalls, on the condition that we do various street-teaming tasks, it’s fair to say I wasn’t entirely brimming over with enthusiasm. I’d seen him play one piano-backed song on Later With Jools Holland the previous week, and made a mental note of his impressive voice. Free things always lure me in though, so we went. On arrival at the venue (after a nightmare journey with closed tube stations and packed buses) we were handed a basket full of delights such as lollies (including Drumsticks, how retro!) rosettes and stickers. And the dreaded mailing list. We positioned ourselves by the front door and waited for the masses to arrive. Luckily free things seem to be popular with everyone, not just me, so we were handing out lollies left right and centre. Once the supplies had been depleted, we were released from our duties and, drinks in hand, headed on down to the front ready for his set.

 

He comes on stage with a full band this time and…. wow. He has actually got one of the most impressively accurate voices I’ve ever heard, he makes singing seem effortless and his voice glides through the melody. Sounding like an intriguing cross between Rufus Wainwright, Freddie Mercury and Jake Shears, he’s got funky basslines, electro-goodness and a girl playing drums, and I can see them being a fantastic support for the Scissor Sisters (and I imagine they’d have a similar target audience…)

 

He storms his way through a disappointingly short set which leaves me wanting a lot more - but then a 45 minute set for someone who doesn’t even have an album out is a good achievement. He already seems to have a bit of a cult following; the 500-capacity venue is packed full of people who seem to know all the words to all the songs. From the moment he steps onstage he looks as though he’s enjoying every second of the experience. He’s got a cheeky smile, and a great relationship with the audience: during his song ‘Big Girl’ he invites an old lady to join him onstage for a bit of a dance - she’s clearly enjoying herself too! And afterwards he says “I dare anyone to say THAT was rehearsed…”

 

His stage presence is almost hypnotic: I find myself standing in awe, soaking up the atmosphere and the music. I can’t wait to catch another of his gigs.

 

This man is going to be HUGE, and if he’s not I’ll eat my hat. Or I’ll eat Emma’s hat, as I don’t have one.

 

:wub2::D

 

http://www.kidvinyl.co.uk/?p=130

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thanks marina to fond this old review..do you think there some vid or pics from this??:blush-anim-cl:

 

You're welcome Fanny :)

Yep, there are

 

Pics: http://www.mikafanclub.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10319&page=3

 

Videos:

http://www.mikafanclub.com/forums/showthread.php?t=3533&highlight=videos

http://www.mikafanclub.com/forums/showthread.php?t=17867

Edited by mari62
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Mika

At Camden Lock 17/Dingwalls, London, South East England

 

Date: 21/11/2006

Venue: Camden Lock 17/Dingwalls, London, South East England

 

by Ross Bennett

 

The all-skipping, all-hopping, Lebanese-born Mika arrives on stage like a returning hero who’s just solved world poverty, cleansed the environment, and eaten a substantial portion of medals for breakfast. Such is the reaction this tousle-haired prince of pomp receives, it’s easy to forget that his first single was only released at the beginning of October. So, why the excitement? Why the delirium? Why, in the case of the girl standing next to me, the uncontrollable bum movements? Well, the boy can sing.

 

Not ****ing Little Man Tate sing, more like, "watch me open my mouth and hit _this note"_ sing. Mika’s voice falls somewhere between Jake Shears’ falsetto – although Mika’s is better – and Freddie Mercury’s more breathless timbre. Following a lengthy tenure at London’s Royal Opera School, his vocals are unsurprisingly well-honed and are without doubt the focal point of tonight’s show.

 

He can write, too. His obvious love for Elton John’s late-seventies, disco-tinged output and Queen’s buoyant piano-led tracks (think ‘Killer Queen’ and ‘You’re My Best Friend’) has given the brace-wearing one a solid line in glammed-up, high-camp rock songs. ‘Stuck In The Middle’ and debut 45 ‘Relax (Take It Easy)’ are the most enjoyable examples paraded out to Dingwalls’ crowd. But as with many musicians with a penchant for the theatrical, Mika and his band of session players unwisely decide to take things too far and slam straight into a brick wall with an absurdly self-indulgent and hugely boring ballad called ‘Over My Shoulder’. If there was ever a song written for the sole purpose of allowing people to piss – apart from Sting’s ‘Fields Of Gold’ – this is it.

 

Things do pick up again afterwards, and the set comes to a bouncing close with the soon-to-be-ubiquitous ‘Grace Kelly’ – great on record, undercooked live – and a "live-only" ditty called ‘Lollipop’ that sees Mika snapping his braces and wiggling his wrists like he's in the middle of an NYC fashion circle, circa 1978.

 

Musically, he's more often than not successful: most of tonight's songs are instantly catchy and obviously danceable. However, his OTT arrangements and soaring vocals will undoubtably have a large proportion of his listeners reeling from the invasive nature of stomping piano and a man singing in a girl’s voice - ha. That, and the inevitable and probably unfair accusations of jumping on the Scissor Sisters/Feeling bandwagon.

 

Such doubts aside, though, this is fine Friday night fare.

 

http://drownedinsound.com/gigs/20722/reviews/1340499

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The idea of Mika supporting Scissor Sisters (or anyone) is laughable now. The guy's got everything else right though. I think this gig was probably the week of/week before I'd first heard Grace Kelly. That's amazing that people were already dressing up.

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21/11/06 .. wow :shocked:

 

I love all this history , thanks everyone for posting

 

JEALOUS I wasnt into him then I must say :sneaky2:

 

You're veeery welcome FD!! Love Mika history as well!!

---

 

Dingwalls gigs' list

 

Tue, Nov 21st 2006 Mika Camden Dingwalls United Kingdom London

 

http://www2.dingwalls.com/index.php?option=com_gigcal&task=alist&Itemid=28

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The Sugarcubes, Laugardalshöll, ReykjavikMika, Dingwalls, London

Sunday, 26 November 200

 

This is the part about Mika:

 

"Suddenly, in the wake of Scissor Sisters and the success of Sean Rowley's Guilty Pleasures, their aesthetic is in the ascendant. And they'll surely be organising ticker-tape cavalcades for the arrival of Mika. The rakish, tousle-haired and terrifyingly talented 22-year-old, who spent his upbringing between London, Paris and Lebanon (which spells "ruling class") and was trained at the Royal Opera (which all but confirms it), isn't as horrendous as those comparisons would suggest. This bright young thing, who carries himself with the battleship confidence of someone for whom nothing in life has ever gone wrong, has more in common with the intelligent end of MOR (10cc, Harry Nilsson, Supertramp), and has an ear for a killer melody.

 

There are other people out there doing this sort of thing at least as well, notably Paul St Paul And The Apostles, and Xavior Roide at his Hanky Panky Cabaret club, but Mika's the one with the Casablanca record company and the adoring (if somewhat Horse and Hound-y) cult following, so good luck to him.

 

His sometimes off-key falsetto has me fearing for the mirrors on the walls, and the jokey cover of the Proclaimers' "500 Miles" (coupled with the drummer's deely-boppers) tickles my Irony Detector slightly, but when you hear the hysterical skylarking chorus of "Grace Kelly", or the brain-snagging hook of "Lollipop", you're not gonna care."

 

http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/reviews/the-sugarcubes-laugardalshoumlll-reykjavikbrmika-dingwalls-london-744738.html

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thank you marina for all the pics, vids and reviews you posted:flowers2:

 

21/11/06 .. wow :shocked:

 

I love all this history , thanks everyone for posting

 

JEALOUS I wasnt into him then I must say :sneaky2:

 

jealous that i didnt even know him then. i first listened to relax and grace kelly in January 07

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