When the band formally known as Dexy’s Midnight Runners announced there was finally going to be a new album for their fans to listen to and digest song by song, few would have guessed what was coming. Many may have hoped for the type of music that made the band one of the most talked about and iconic of the early 1980’s. What they got was something beyond their wildest dreams and Dexy’s, as they now are, were reborn.
The Liverpool Philharmonic Hall has seen many nights over the years where the music has just flowed from start to finish and where the audience has been absolutely wrapped and caught in the emotion. This was a night to join those incredible concerts and as the evening progressed through each song of the new album One Day I’m Going To Soar, the tension become tighter, Kevin Rowland and the band became more visibly relaxed and the audience who had braved the worst of the Liverpool weather danced in aisles and forget about the downpours of the day.
One Day I’m Going To Soar is an exceptional and creative high point piece of work but to see it performed in its entirety on stage gave it new meaning, a dimension that couldn’t be imagined just listening to it. Songs such as She’s Got A Wiggle, I’m Thinking Of You, Incapable of Love and It’s O.K. John Joe were shown to be not just brilliant songs but class, songs that come around so infrequently that the rareness of them makes them precious.
Perhaps the most touching part of the night was Kevin Rowland saluting the victims of the Hillsborough cover up and the families who never stopped fighting to right the shameful wrong that has been so unfairly labelled on the city. It was a touching moment and one that struck the cord on how most people in England view Liverpool and its people, a fantastic gesture by the man from the Midlands.
There was time for a couple of more songs and as the violin chord led to the band’s most admired and well loved song, Come On Eileen, the cheer would have been heard as far down Hardman Street.
Liverpool audiences know when they have been given a magnificent night out and when the music has been played to within an inch of perfection. The standing ovation from all quarters of the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall speaks volumes of the love that people have for Dexy’s and for Kevin Rowland in particular.
An outstanding evening of outstanding music which was made top notch for the sheer fact that Kevin Rowland showed that he has lost none of the imaginative flair needed to be a star.
Ian D. Hall