New act Spark kicked off the night, a very talented 18 year old lady from East London who for me sounded like a fusion of Marina, Ellie Goulding with a pinch of Ke$ha and Lily Allen cheekiness but ultimately her lyrics and vocals held their own.
Spark was up against it initially, the crowd were impatient and standing almost two hours without anyone on stage took it's toll but she completely won me over and my aching feet were forgotten about. I can safely say she won over the crowd too and her set was short, but very, very sweet.
Highlights were 'Shoot Out The Moon', 'Blow' and 'Revolving' which included wind up doll movements from the glamorous Sparks, always a winner! I predict this lady is going to not only Spark but Ignite the music world very soon (vom-tastic). Check out her MySpace page and Twitter @sparkthemusic.
Eventually a projector kicked into life with some Marina visual concept images and the lady herself bounded onto stage to belt out 'Girls'. The self beaded tights were a massive hit and her energy lifted the whole crowd.
Marina pronounced she was glad to be finally be in Cardiff and was sorry that she didn't have a Welsh accent, think I can forgive her on that!
The lights went blue for 'I am not a robot' and lit up Marina's neon lipstick, hair and plastic hearts with the crowd belting out the chorus.
What really shone through the performance was Marina's excellent vocals, not only has she got a good range but her voice is unusual and powerful.
Marina exited the stage for a swift costume change and delighted the crowd with a great rendition of 'Hollywood' aptly wearing Mickey Mouse dungarees and oversize heart sunglasses that Sir Elton would gladly give the nod to.
The tone of the evening went from energetic to peaceful as Marina played on the keyboard and tenderly sang 'Obsessions' and 'Numb' with the eager fans as supporting vocals.
Another swift costume change and one of the highlights of the night was when Marina performed a cover of 3OH!3s 'Starstrukk' feat. Katy Perry from her recent appearance on Radio 1's Live Lounge. Her vocals were top notch and the crowd happily added the whistling parts.
Suitably, Marina ended her performance where it began with an energetic rendition of 'Mowgli's Road' and the crowd barely needed encouragement to 'Cuckoo' on cue - anything for Marina!
Marina only dipped her toe into the realms of performance art and set design for this gig but I'm sure we can expect far more from her concerts in October. This was Lady GaGa's Monster Ball Tour on a budget, but still excellent and effective.
What I love and admire about Marina is on her stage presence, she is captivating and fun to watch, she clearly loves performing and delights and endears the crowd with her energetic dancing, close to perfect singing and ability to get the audience excited effortlessly.
This was everything I wanted from seeing Marina and more... so worth the hours of standing, up close and personal body contact and bad singing from the girl behind me.
Love, SGS xoxo