Bob Lefzetz went to see Mika play Hollywood yesterday. I say 'play'; his review makes it clear any actual playing had taken place at another time and place:
Mika would move his head away from the mic, but his vocal would remain perfect. But when he spoke, there was distortion, a distinct lack of clarity. That’s what live sounds like. Most of the time tonight, it was Memorex.
I’ve been to so many shows, and I’ve never heard sound like this. So perfect, it doesn’t sound like the record, it IS the record!
I’m not saying everybody’s mic was turned off, that no one was plugged in. But I don’t think Jeff Pevar could get that acoustic guitar sound live. And, who are all these Mikas doing the backup vocals if he’s singing the lead?
Lefsetz does concede that there wasn't much need for Mika to bother singing, as his audience weren't really interested in music anyway - they had a good time.
And, indeed, provides a measure of exactly who the audience were:
People were lining up to pay for balloon hats.
If you're shoveling over cash for a balloon hat, who would be bothered what's happening on stage?