Last year after being sunk into a YouTube blackhole I stumbled across someone called Poppy. Her videos are unique and extremely hard to describe (I’ve been trying to for the last 10 minutes) which has helped her rack up over 250 million views on her channel with certain videos being spread virally across many social media platforms with people being obsessed over how ‘creepy’ they are.
After digging through her video selection I found out she’s actually a singer with really catchy songs that got stuck in my head for days on end. Since then I’ve been following her on social media and was excited to see her announce a one-off show in London touring her first studio album, Poppy.Computer.
Music was blaring as I walked into the very intimate venue, The Garage, and immediately noticed the support act was a mannequin named Charlotte who has featured in a lot of Poppy’s videos. She was propped up behind a DJ set up whilst the crowd went wild for every song ‘she’ played. Soon after I got there the music stopped and Titanic Sinclair, a driving force in the Poppy character, came on stage and repeatedly started pouring a purple liquid in and out of two different cups while staring at the audience and from there the tone was set for a surreal evening.
image courtesy of Samantha Lutes
Poppy entered on stage singing the first track off her new album, I’m Poppy, where above a whir of synths she sings the spelling of her name with the crowd chanting it back. Though it’s such a small venue, the room is packed with admiration for the singer.
Through the songs she’s accompanied with two dancers that take centre stage as they show an impressive amount of energy as they kick and leap through the high tempo music, with Poppy joining in on the choreography every now and then. The whole show, much like her videos, is immaculately rehearsed with no breaking of character whatsoever.
Her new album revolves around technology laced with reality, one song she performed called ‘Computer Boy’ is her talking about her romantic interest which is being represented as her laptop “I fell in love with the man of the future / I’ve got a thing for my laptop computer”. Like a lot of her other songs and videos she’s also referring to how people are so obsessed with technology.After a short but powerful set of 9 songs with interludes of her videos playing out on a screen (one of which involves her eating doritos and drinking an energy drink), Poppy, Sinclair and the two dancers all bow to faded lights as the crowd cry out for an encore, all repeating her name until Sinclair informs us that ‘they’ don’t want Poppy to perform another song as they are watching her constantly and the only way to bring Poppy is if the whole crowd chants the 3 magic words of ‘Monster Energy Drink‘.
image courtesy of youtube.com/ThatPoppyTV
She comes back on to perform the final song, Money, which is off the Bubblebath EP which was released in 2016 under the name of That Poppy, the whole EP focuses less on the character of Poppy and reminds you that she is a real person under the illusion who’s passion is to make music. The song is a fan favourite and receives the best feedback of the night with everyone off their feet and singing along to lyrics that express a satirical love of money and all things superficial “If money can’t buy happiness then why is it so fabulous?”
Poppy is a refreshing new face in pop music with her electrifying beats and self-aware lyrics, she shows she is more than just a passing viral video and performed one of the most compelling and fun live shows I’ve ever been to.