MTV Review: Kelis Brings All The Boys (And Girls) To The Somerset House Courtyard
Kicking off another week of Summer Series at Somerset House, Kelis proved she’s far more than just a Lil’ Star, with a crowd-pleasing performance…
Having released her new album Food in April this year, we weren't sure if Kelis would still be mixing up her Milkshakes for her Monday night Summer Series at Somerset House gig, or whether it was all going to be about the Jerk Ribs from now on. Thankfully, the US star concocted a delicious combination of the two, pleasing new and old fans alike.
The Feeling: With stellar support from Jess Glynne, the sold-out crowd was well warmed up and remained upbeat, despite Kelis running 45 minutes behind schedule. The outdoor setting and balmy London night made for a perfect start to the week, and a few treats from Tom’s Terrace bar didn’t seem to hurt either.
The Look: Appearing on stage in an ethereal underwater-themed gown and matching cape, Kelis accessorised with bejeweled seahorses in her wild mane, and was backed by a full-on brass band. Impressive stuff, which made for some mighty big noise!
Tunes: Kicking off with a cover of Nina Simone’s Feeling Good, Kelis had the crowd singing along to her gravelly vocals from the word go. Next came the first track from her new album Food, the aptly titled Breakfast, before the 34-year-old broke into the crowd-pleasing Millionaire and 4th Of July (Fireworks).
Taking things down a notch with Lil' Star - originally a duet with Cee-Lo Green – Kelis then gave everyone what they had been waiting for, with a reggae version of her 2003 hit Milkshake. Bounce had everyone doing just that, before another full-crowd sing-a-long to Acapella, and a return to Feeling Good for Kelis’ exit from the stage.
Banter: “I’ve written my fair share of break-up songs and they’re sad as hell, but sometimes you just want your stuff back,” Kelis joked, before launching into new track Rumble. With lyrics including, “I'm so glad you give back my keys,” we can see where this lady’s priorities lie. Girl power!
Sweat Factor: Kelis had to whip off her cape because things got so hot. Presumably to stop her milkshakes from curdling?
Celeb Spots: We were too busy dancing to notice – even if Ryan Gosling had been standing two feet away we would probably have missed it. That’s the sign of a good show right there.
Summary: With a few years out of the spotlight (in which she trained as a saucier and developed her own sauce line) it’s easy to forget just how many hits Kelis has had. Her Summer Series gig served as a perfect reminder, not to mention a great introduction to her new material, which will no doubt earn her a whole new legion of fans. With a slot at Latitude Festival later this week, Kelis is definitely one of our top tips for festival season 2014.