Clarkson and Lady Gaga are entertaining contrasts
Kelly Clarkson and Lady Gaga ruled the roost at the House of Blues Monday night, offering a piping-hot slice of the current pop charts.
The free show - part of T-Mobile's Grammy Celebration Concert Tour, which features different artists at every stop - was an amusing study in contrasts. Where Clarkson's sartorial choice was flared jeans and flip-flops, Gaga went for multiple fashion statements, a few involving bubbles and breastplates. The winner of the made-for-TV talent contest "American Idol" was loose and natural fronting a live band, while the one who fancies herself an "artist" mainly performed robotic dance moves to DJ'ed tracks. And Texas homegirl Clarkson good-naturedly goofed on her attempts at sexiness in her recent "I Do Not Hook Up" video after the New York glitter-grime queen intoned playfully and portentously about truth and art.
Both were highly entertaining in their own ways, although Clarkson's warmer, more varied set ultimately felt more full-bodied.
Relaxed and in great voice, Clarkson hopscotched through genres with ease, cycling through a spectrum of emotions. She belted out the bluesy, acoustic kiss-off "Chivas," let her woman-scorned fury fly during "Never Again," channeled her desperate inner disco diva for "If I Can't Have You," and surrendered to the punky thrash of "Whyyawannabringmedown?" Singalongs were frequent and enthusiastic, none more so than the still-irresistible "Since U Been Gone."
Gaga was more unstoppable than irresistible. Flipping her blond wig with impeccable vehemence and tirelessly bouncing alongside her trio of male dancers, the glamour gal got the house going early with the sculpted electro-pop rhythms that have made her fizzy debut album, "The Fame," a hit. Revelers included everyone from middle-age moms to Gaga--impersonating drag queens, all letting themselves go to the pulsating grooves of "Paparazzi," chanting along to "Poker Face," and happily obeying the title of "Just Dance."