Gig review: Charli XCX, Glasgow

Charlie XCX: Masterclass in soundtracking the teen strop years. Picture: PA

Charlie XCX: Masterclass in soundtracking the teen strop years. Picture: PA

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THIS month’s new face of pop is recycled into last month’s burnt-out reality show celeb at a faster rate than ever thanks to the internet, but longevity of a sort still exists for any artist smart, sassy or talented enough to find new ways of staying in the public’s face.

Charli XCX

Queen Margaret Union, Glasgow

***

Fortunately for Charli XCX (also known as Cambridge-raised 22-year-old Charlotte Aitchison) she’s just enough of each to have built a strong following of teens and twenty-somethings, the Glasgow contingent of whom packed into this Glasgow Uni hall on Friday night.

Of course it doesn’t hurt that she has a bona fide huge hit to her name, or at least shared by her name. Her credit on Icona Pop’s sassy, shouty I Love It (a number one in the UK and top ten in the US) in 2012 made her name, although it’s an indication of how she must wish to move her career on that it was used so early in the set here.

Elsewhere, Charli – dark-haired and wearing a zebra-print skirt and top – led her all-female backing trio (named Charli’s Angels, they wear angel wings to go with the silver sequins) through a masterclass in soundtracking the teen strop years.

“I don’t wanna go to school /I just wanna break the rules,” she yelled satisfyingly on the seismic-bassed Break the Rules, imagining herself to life as a globe-striding transatlantic success story on London Queen, adding raw sexuality to the sass on Doing It and finishing with the anthemic if at heart pretty twee Boom Clap.

Played pleasingly live and loud, it was the kind of set which has been seen and heard many times before, but which will never go out of fashion as long as teens need artists to express how they’re feeling in no uncertain terms.

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