Live Report: Allie X – KOKO, London

Not just a live show, but an experience...

Performing at the KOKO theatre has always been a dream for Allie X. The iconic venue located in Camden was transformed into a vibrant, otherworldly playground by the queen of electro-pop herself. The Canadian pop sensation brought her ‘Girl With No Face’ tour to London, delivering a performance that was as enigmatic and mesmerising as the album itself. KOKO, with its storied past and majestic architecture, was the perfect venue for Allie X’s theatrical display. The crowd, a colourful mix of dedicated fans and curious first-timers, buzzed with anticipation. As the ornate chandeliers dimmed and the first pulsing beats filled the air, the atmosphere was electric, primed for a night of unforgettable music and spectacle.

Serving as the opening act, Tei Shi was a great discovery, with her dreamy vocals and atmospheric sound acting as the perfect prelude to Allie X’s set. Her performance was a beautiful blend of ethereal melodies and electronic beats, creating a soothing yet captivating atmosphere. The setlist included fan favourites such as ‘Valerie’ and ‘QQ (Quédate Queriéndome)’. Her interaction with the audience was warm and engaging, drawing everyone in and building anticipation for the night’s headliner.

Draped in a futuristic yet gothic corseted white ensemble that seemed to blend seamlessly the Victorian doll dress with the mood and sound of ‘Girl With No Face’, Allie X emerged to a roar of applause surrounded by the darkness of the stage. Opening with her iconic track ‘Bitch,’ she immediately set the tone for the evening: a blend of raw emotion and polished performance art. The setlist was a carefully curated journey through her latest album, interspersed with fan favourites from her earlier projects like ‘Casanova’ and ‘Science’. Each song was accompanied by stunning visuals – think moody lighting and foggy ambience – that brought the themes of her music to vivid life. The standout moment was definitely her rendition of ‘Galina’ from her latest album, which started off with an acoustic piano to then finally explode into the track we’re familiar with. As Allie X revealed in a past interview with Zach Sang, this is a bittersweet song which immortalises powerful, maternal and healing figures and the subsequent insecurity caused by their disappearance. What sets the artist apart is her ability to connect with her audience on a deeply personal level, whether through her songs or her curious life experiences. Other highlights included the popular tracks ‘Off With Her Tits’, ‘Black Eye’, and ‘Paper Love’, which had the whole crowd singing along and dancing to uncontrollably.

However, the evening was full of surprises, including a spontaneous duet with Tei Shi of Allie X’s ‘Suzie Save Your Love,’ which gave a deeper meaning to the already emotion-filled track. Towards the finale, Allie X premiered a new song — a recurring tease that she’s been doing in all her latest shows — which may hint at a deluxe version of the album or simply offer an initial taste of what’s to come.

Allie X’s concert at KOKO was not just a performance; it was an experience, a journey through the artist’s mind and soul. This tour is a testament to Allie X’s growth as an artist. From intimate club gigs to grand theatre shows, she’s honed her live performance to an art form. Her ability to blend striking visuals with emotional depth and raw talent made for a night that will linger in the minds of those who were there. Tei Shi’s opening set provided the perfect warm-up, making the entire evening a seamless journey from start to finish. As the ‘Girl with No Face’ tour continues, one thing is clear: Allie X is not just an artist to watch – she’s an artist to be experienced, again and again.

Words: Gennaro Costanzo
Photography: Eleonora C. Collini

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