If, like me, you were driven mad by Kaiser Chiefs' unavoidable single " Ruby" this summer, you'll have realised the massive marketing machine now driving the Brit-pop behemoths.
The Leeds five-piece headlined T on The Fringe's biggest gig this year, as the city's various festivals began to pack up their tents, and attracted a 20,000-strong audience, dotted with a startling number of parents chasing toddlers around the lager-soaked crowd.
When Kaiser Chiefs broke through in 2005 with "I Predict a Riot", they were fresh and rousingly fun, with a talent for infuriatingly catchy hooks. Now they are more robotic than riotous. Opening with "Every Day I Love You Less and Less", they plodded through a volley of hits from their multi-million-selling Employment and Yours Truly, Angry Mob.
Led by the cherubic vocalist Ricky Wilson, Kaiser Chiefs have rocketed from obscurity to superstardom. But rarely has a band become so tedious so quickly.
As bland and cosy as The Antiques Roadshow, but not as interesting, the child-friendly rockers never put a foot or note wrong in a leaden display of workmanlike pop. Stripped of passion, they were blatantly going through the motions and ticking off the crowd-pleasing boxes: rehearsed puerile banter, formulaic stage moves, call-and-response rock platitudes. And the terrible thing is, even their fans knew it, many leaving halfway through, after the concert highlight, "I Predict a Riot", probably to put the kids to bed.
Decidedly not average were The View, the tiny teenage Dundonians preceding the Kaisers with pugnacious jangle-pop in effervescent, spiky contrast to the headliners. Jumping around like hobbits, they played pithy songs from their debut album, Hats Off to the Buskers. Touching on everything from punk to country, with bursts of ska, they make sunny rock with a dark twist.
The opening act, Pigeon Detectives, come from the same area, geographically and musically, as Kaiser Chiefs, with Clash guitar layering and lovelorn lyrics. Let's hope they don't bland out so quickly.Reuse content