22 Jul

COCO Sumner is better known for being Sting’s daughter than for being the enigmatic lead singer of I Blame Coco, but tonight she commanded a stage that was all her own. 

Despite vocal comparisons to her father – some of the intonations were similar, but that could hardly be helped – Coco’s voice was strong and husky, and provided the edge needed to prevent her electronic pop songs from being too saccharine sweet.

Although the setlist veered awkwardly between the lighter pop music and the heavier, more ska-influenced songs such as “No Smile” and “Quicker”, what seemed to be I Blame Coco’s weak beginning recovered with surprising exuberance.

Her awkward banter failed to detract from the fun, catchy “Selfmachine”, expertly straddling the line between indie and electronic pop.

And the energy that was lacking from the crowd soon picked up when “Please Rewind” kicked up the tempo, and managed not to be entirely lost when the slower “It’s About To Get Worse” followed – not the best decision.

Coco has the PR and connections to be an instant success, so it’s refreshing to see her choosing to work her way up the hard way by playing intimate and low-key gigs.

While there’s no argument the songs are catchy – and no doubt Coco is talented – they are in danger of sounding incredibly similar to each other and something else is needed to pull the blend of indie pop into a more distinctive sound.

originally published here.


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