Nostalgie 80 ColisÃ©e Pepsi, Quebec City, QC April 10
Published Apr 13, 2009Best performance: Samantha Fox. Sculpted and squeezed into black glitter, sporty neon and bedazzled leather, Ms. Fox was pro, through and through. Backed by four dancers, the onetime "Page Three Girl" and latter-day lesbian played up the rock-chick smut, which wasn't difficult with such material as "Touch Me" and "I Wanna Have Some Fun." Less easy is being an aging sex symbol, but at 44, her voice and body are solid, and with tight choreography, a flashy aesthetic and shit-eating grin, she looks ready for Vegas.
Best attitude: Rick Astley. You know that old film critic's line about good actors who appear to realize that they're in terrible movies? Well that sums up Astley's slightly awkward and embarrassed performance, wherein he paced the length of the stage and catwalk belting out such gems as "Never Gonna Give You Up" (his voice in fine form despite his virtual retirement) and acknowledged poster- and vinyl-waving fanatics with humour and humility. Rickrolled, for real.
Best body: Debbie Gibson (pictured). She's worked Broadway and launched a music camp for kids, but now Ms. Gibson is ready for her musical comeback, and her close-up. Though she stuck to hits like "Shake Your Love" and "Electric Youth," the 38-year-old has a new album up her sleeve, and probably a personal trainer, judging from her ripped and tanned gams and abs. White short shorts? Check. Bleached hair and teeth? Check. Voice? Not so much. Even her Broadway belting couldn't bolster that weak vibrato. But still, anyone for tennis?
Best voice: Tiffany. She's a covers girl, but so were most famous female singers, and while Tiffany is no Billie Holiday, and her flowing hippie rags were weird and unflattering, the songs she performed (including the awkwardly apt ballad "Could've Been," with Gibson on piano) raised goosebumps and short hairs throughout the soda coliseum. This was especially true during her biggest hit, "I Think We're Alone Now," namesake of a documentary about a pair of Tiffany stalkers, which came to mind as she was nearly dragged into the crowd. Ah, fandom.