The CLUAS Archive: 1998 - 2011


Lady Gaga (live in The O2, Dublin)

Lady Gaga live in DublinReview Snapshot: The Madonna comparisons are obvious. They both write and sing, the choreography is similar in parts, Alejandro is the new La Isla Bonita but I’ve never seen Madonna play the piano the way Gaga can. She’s here for the long haul and I’ve no doubt, on tonight’s performance we’re watching the artist of this decade.

The Cluas Verdict? 9.5 out of 10

Full Review: The world’s current most famous pop star returned to Dublin for the first of 3 nights at the o2 for a two-hour show split into four acts culminating with her Monster Ball. Act 1 was set around a New York City backdrop for the opening numbers ‘Dance In The Dark’ and ‘Glitter And Grease’ as her green car breaks down in the Big Apple, but fear not, under the bonnet is a piano which she plays during ‘Just Dance’.

There’s a constant changing of costumes throughout ‘Beautiful Dirty Rich’ and ‘The Fame’, and there’s certainly a Michael Jackson influence. Besides the Thriller album playing over the house speakers before the gig, she’s also stolen the catapulting of dancers up out of the ground from his This Is It film.
With the car breaking down, they’ve no option but to take the subway to the ball and during ‘Love Game’ she beings to read some of the many posters that the Irish fans have written for her. It’s a lovely part of the show but as she struggles to read some of them at a distance she comments “Lady Gaga plays the o2 in Dublin and she can’t even read”.
The numbers continue with ‘Boys Boys Boys’, ‘Money Honey’, and ‘Telephone which has her on the walkway down the front close to her “little monsters”.  On numerous occasions thoughout the concert she gives out positive vibes. It’s obvious she was bullied as a child in school and was told she’d never achieve anything but she gets the message across that we’re all equal and can achieve anything we want.
The highlight of the show musically is her unaccompanied version of ‘Speechless’. She sits at the piano and sings it completely stripped down. There’s no whistles of bells on this number and it shows how talented this woman really is when the masks and make-up are taken away.
She stays at the piano because she wants to give the fans something new. “I know when my little monsters are ready to hear something new, so this is a track from my new album Born This Way” she states. During‘You And I’ she discusses her long term relationship with her boyfriend and dedicates it to her irish fans, before telling them about her love for Jameson Whiskey. She even introduces an Irish harp into the set before performing ‘So Happy I Could Die’.
For the next Act, the scenery changes to a forestry. ‘Monster’, ‘Teeth’ and ‘Alejandro’ are performed between footage depicting anything from blood and guts to Monsters, while ‘Poker Face’ has the audience eating out of her hand. By now the o2 is rockin, everyone is on their feet and the atmosphere is just fantastic.
The final act concludes with the Monster Ball. A huge monster appears to attack Gaga while she sings ‘Paparazzi, and the encore is ‘Bad Romance’ a song that is celebrating its first anniversary tonight. “I wrote this little song a year ago today” she added.
I brought my 9-year old daughter but came away from this gig a bigger fan that she probably is.
Mick Lynch

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Nuggets from our archive

2004 - The CLUAS Reviews of Erin McKeown's album 'Grand'. There was the positive review of the album (by Cormac Looney) and the entertainingly negative review (by Jules Jackson). These two reviews being the finest manifestations of what became affectionately known, around these parts at least, as the 'McKeown wars'.