ARTIST: The Elite Four
SUPPORT: I’m sure they were fine
VENUE, TOWN: King Eddie’s, London, UK
DATE: 29th September 2011
FIVE WORD REVIEW: You won’t believe your ears
MAIN REVIEW: It’s Thursday night. A pub in Stratford. More importantly, it’s Live night. You’re not expecting much in the sweaty, man-furnace of a room you’ve been sardined into and you’d probably cheerfully maim every other human in present if you thought you could get away with it.
Suddenly a voice booms out from behind you.
“WE ARE THE ELITE FOUR AND WE’RE HERE TO SING ABOUT POKEMON.”
Tea has been spat. Monocles have been jolted from their sockets. It was an ambush, sir; they took us completely by surprise.
And like the Elite Four itself, they’re a motley bunch. There’s some sort of budget version of Salvador Dali on the keys, a Jim Carey/Diglett hybrid on drums, a disgruntled Aryan clutching what looks like a fisher price toy and on bass a man dressed in a full-body Pikachu suit.
To prove they mean business they lead us in with a rousinge sing-along to the original intro theme. The intro theme as re-imagined by a twisted 1930s cabaret act. Just to ram the point home, Budget Dali punctuates the end of the song with the following question:
“How do you get a Pikachu on a Bus?!”
From there we move on to a salacious ballad about the comparative womanly virtues of Misty, before soberly a song celebrating the life and times of Jiggly Puff complete with creepily squeaky-voiced rendition of the original Jiggly chant. Pick of the bunch though has to be their rendition of the legendary Team Rocket Theme, but with a Depeche mode edge to it.
That’s right, marrying this:
Quite frankly I can’t work out why anybody hasn’t tried this before. Possibly the danger of being arrested and carted off to The Hague.
It’s around this point (The point where you’re not sure whether to applaud or call the police) that Budget Dali interrupts our regular scheduled programming for a special flash announcement. Pokemon impression competition. On the stage. Right Now. FABULOUS PRIZES. This is quite clearly the greatest idea for a half-time show ever.
Turns out journalistic hacks are quite talented at inane parrot-like mimicry. Who knew?
Check out the booty(ies)
It’s ramshackle, it’s untested, the leveling’s off on the vocals and they even seem to have difficulty even counting themselves in (1, 2, 1, 2, 3… uh) but rather than embarrassing it’s actually rather charming. The whole thing is so utterly ridiculous, but delivered with such conviction you can’t help be carried along by it.
“We call this one Charizard!” Bellows Budget-Dali gleefully.
“Great. Play the one we don’t know yet,” mutters Pikaman mutinously.
Elite Four, I choose you <3