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CULTURE: REVIEW - Nothing too rebellious to complicate ma6ers; Avril Lavigne NEC Arena.

Byline: Jayne Howa

She's sweet-looking, but has an edge of rock star confidence. She pens love songs, ballads and full-on rock songs with more than a hint of grunge to them.

Avril Lavigne is a hero to many a little girl, too.

Legions of under tens swarmed around the Arena, decked head to toe in a grungy uniform of leggings, skirts, waistcoats and baseball boots, all in black, white and shocking pink in deference to the punk princess.

Forced to cancel six US shows on the Best Damn Thing tour early last month due to acute laryngitis, the Canadian singer-songwriter was on top form in Birmingham with a slick show featuring many of her hits.

Kicking off with Girlfriend, she ensured the audience - a real mix of youngsters with parents to teens and middle agers - danced. Complicated, The Best Damn Thing, When You're Gone from her latest album and earlier songs from her short career were belted out.

Accompanied by a troupe of formidable street dancers, she played her sparkly pink and white guitars, tinkled the ivories of her pink piano and took to her pink drums to showcase her talent and show why she has sold more than 30 million albums in six years.

As if to confirm the teenybopper status of her fanbase, The Jonas Brothers supported Lavigne. Not quite American High School rock (more middle school), the brothers have been at home on the Disney and Nickleodeon channels, performing with the likes of Hannah Montana.

Huge in the States among the prepubescent, they are now chancing themselves in Europe. Typical US rock, with pretensions towards mild rock star behaviour (with the throwing down of microphone stands etc), they won over thousands in Brum. Expect to hear more from them.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Jun 2, 2008
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