I may have mentioned that my friend Natalie & I had tickets to see Take That this week…well, the counting down sleeps came to an end & we went on Tuesday night to Villa Park, Birmingham and were not disappointed. I was already slightly over excited having spotted the stadium with the giant man from the M6!
Their sold out Progress Live tour has already been running for a good few weeks now so I have to admit I was half-expecting the boys to be knackered and maybe not on top form. Couldn’t have been more wrong.
Pet Shop Boys were the special guests and were a very good choice. A chance for vocal chords and cameras to be warmed up as they did songs most of the crowd already knew from their impressive back catalogue and provided a colourful show too which is unusual for a supporting band. Enjoyed their set very much.
With just enough time to queue for the ladies and fight back to a decent position on the pitch, it was soon the turn of the main attraction. The screen (a giant pc monitor) counted us down to Take That’s arrival and amidst screams and camera flashes they launched the show with “Rule The World.” This being the 4-piece Take That: Jason Orange, Howard Donald, Mark Owen & Gary Barlow.
They then made their way down to the B stage for “Greatest Day” during which we got showered in *gold* tickertape before “Hold Up A Light” which gave us dancers swinging fiery torches around. Then the song Gary always introduces as “the one that brought us back…Patience” after which the 4 boys disappeared momentarily. But only to add a little fancy dress for “Shine” in which we also saw a wide array of fanciful characters including bees, butterflies, trees, a rabbit (more on this later) and a giant caterpillar which was hugely cute and one point carried Mark on its back!
They paraded the runway to finish the song with Jason & Howard’s fancy dance moves and then left the stage only to appear on screen back with the aforementioned rabbit for an adapdation of The Beatles’ Sergeant Pepper tune. “Robbie Williams and the Take That band!” It was a great little video and once people saw the rabbit was Robbie, even more excitement built. He climbed out of the costume left the other 4 behind to leap out of the screen and onto the stage in order to entertain us.
“Let Me Entertain You” was followed by “Rock DJ” and “Come Undone” with lots of banter in between. Robbie in typically cheeky form but highly enthusiastic and putting on a top notch performance. This time without a wardrobe malfunction much to Natalie’s disappointment!
He then climbed onto a contraption that hovered him above part of the crowd so he could shake hands with a few lucky concert-goers during “Feel” before ending his solo part of the show with the always awesome “Angels.”
A brief break before acrobats took to the back screen which became a wall of water, and all 5 members of the band sang “The Flood” from cages up above. 4 descended to the ground in their cages but Robbie took another leap and hung upside down at one point, then they changed into red and black tracksuits while we got the first glimpse of the giant robot Om for “SOS” & “Underground Machine.”
Another slight outfit change as giant chess pieces came forth to the B stage for an extended version of “Kidz” including a Robbie rap and a Jason & Howard dance off. For 40+ men they can sure still throw some moves between them!
Back to the A stage & Om (whose hands became little stages) for “Pretty Things” and then some banter & posing while Mr Barlow’s piano was arranged.
This meant it was time for some old classics and we were treated to bits of “A Million Love Songs”, “Babe”, Everything Changes” & “Back For Good” they didn’t want to do my favourite “Could It Be Magic” but did do a snippet of “Red Red Wine” presumably in honour of UB40 being Brummie. Or possibly to compliment the little skit they do featuring a tray of drinks where Gary, Howard & Jason have a small glass of red wine while Mark & Robbie get milk! Then we were treated to old favourite “Pray” complete with original dance routine 🙂
Om then did some robot moves while the band changed again, this time into tracksuit like outfits but with LEDs attached and they played their latest single “Love Love” before making their way back to the B stage to end on “Never Forget” which is always amazing.
Apparently some people left not expecting an encore. How silly!
Staying on the B stage the whole group sang a little of Robbie’s solo hit “No Regrets” before the high energy “Relight My Fire”. To end, “Eight Letters” and the band made their way back along the runway to the A stage while shaking hands with the (presumably all) girls that were patient/crazy/large-bladdered enough to be at the barrier from very early in the day!
A really great night, can’t wait for the DVD!
30 week song challenge
7. Song you hate.
Can’t think of one. All music has it’s place for someone. There’s artists I’m not a fan of such as Eminem, Lady Gaga, & most heavy metal or rap, but, nothing that I *hate* I’m afraid! 🙂