I hope all is well with you.
I went to see Jeff Lynne’s ELO in London, April 20th 2016, and since it’s the first gig I’ve been to for a while, (and the first at the O2), I thought I’d whack up a review…
I’m an old school ELO fan – I first got into them back in 1979, and I’ve seen them 3 times before, Wembley Arena 1981, Birmingham NEC 1983, and Wembley Stadium 1986.
None of them featured that many of the older stuff, as Jeff Lynne was tiring of being constricted by what he felt were fans demands to stay with the ‘Out of the Blue’ lush sound.
To be honest, by the 1986 Wembley show it was all over bar the shouting. When he then went off into producing and the Travelling Wilbury’s, us old ELO fans thought he had firmly shut that door.
His attempt to bring ELO back in 2001 was not a success, with a mooted tour having to be cancelled. That’s because it was basically him and a backing band, so ELO fans rebelled!
This time around, he is doing it on the back of a big revival in media pushes, a seemingly genuine interest in going back to the ELO name, but taking the fans into account by calling it Jeff Lynne’s ELO.
He played all the instruments on the latest album, Alone In The Universe, so hardly a band effort, and for the live shows he is using what is basically Take That’s live band, but there are big arena dates set up for a big tour, so I was in for a ticket!
As I said, I had never even been to the O2 Arena before, so was looking forward to seeing what it was like. I got there early enough to take a ride on the cable car across the Thames, and then it was in for the show.
I stopped off at the merchandise stand for the obligatory programme, plus a nice retro style tee shirt!
I like the arena – the sound is good. The steep seats are *really* steep, but I had booked some a bit more pricey and lower down, so the view was fine.
Support band was The Feeling. They did a really good job in their half hour slot, and gained a new fan in me!
Then after a 45 minute wait after The Feeling, it was time for Jeff Lynne’s ELO…
What a show!
Great light show, loads of old songs, masses of hits after hits. The sound was great, and the band was as tight as a nut.
They were on for 90 mins, lots of people dancing, lots of people singing. I suspect I’m not the only old school ELO who had thought they would never hear that kind of crowd or that sense of excitement for an ELO show again!
It seems to have gone down well on social media too, always a good sign.
For such a hardworking touring band back in the day, Jeff Lynne didn’t really enjoy it as he found he couldn’t reproduce the studio sound. This time around with a musical director fully involved, the sound is superb, so hopefully it won’t be just a one off tour.
So, the Great Gordino verdict? Very nice, to say the least, and it made an old fan very happy!
That’s a memory to stick around for a while!
‘Til Next Time,
Health and Happiness,