Hot Chip live in the Limelight last week.

REVIEW: Hot Chip – Limelight, Belfast

Hot Chip live in the Limelight last week.
Hot Chip live in the Limelight last week.

London band Hot Chip play the Limelight, holding a night of beguiling electronic pop.

As one of the most distinctive and innovative bands combining dance music and indie in the 2000s and 2010s and with 15 years and six studio albums under their belt, the sold out night promised many things.

Hot Chips most recent album ‘Why Make Sense?’ is not only somewhat allusive to the 1984 Talking Heads live album ‘Stop Making Sense’, but also arguably encapsulates the band itself. After well over a decade and six albums, Hot Chip have learned to perfectly fuse pop and dance, through the use of vintage synths and their unconventional electronic sound.

Musically they strike a great balance between being unanchored experimentalists and genius pop writers. Beginning with Huarache Lights, a track from the bands latest album, the night was off. Boasting an impressive light show alongside the infectious pop, songs such as One Life Stand and Love is the Future were instant crowd pleasers. One of the most impressive parts of the bands reportoire is that they play live without backing tracks, unusual for a band of this genre.


Next played was Over and Over, a song that after a decade is still one of the bands greatest and most well known hits. This was followed by Alley Cats, Cry for You and Shake a Fist, all tracks that perfectly exemplify the genius of the band in their ability to mould together a combination of modern pop and vintage electro.

All of these tracks were accompanied by guitarist Al Doyle and front man Alexis Taylor dancing around keeping the energy up. This high energy performance, despite 3/4 of the band behind keyboards, was a true testament to the pure pop of their songs.

The final few tracks of the set began with Ready for the Floor, another anthemic song from the band. This song sent the crowd into uproar, once again an example of the bands absolute talent in their musical writings. Finishing off with I Feel Better and the new album title track, Why Make Sense?, this was an impressive finish.

The night was a hypnotic wash of nearly subliminal, pulse-like techno beats, acoustic guitars, and plinky pianos, but the vocals were the true star of the show. Maria Macfarlane, GiggingNI.com