As you all know, Roxette gave a “surprise” concert at Leif’s Lounge (at Hotel Tylösand, Halmstad) on Wednesday 4 of August. Here’s my personal review of the before and after.

We arrived at the hotel at around 5 pm and went to get our reserved tickets. There weren’t many fans waiting outside/inside the hotel, must have been maximum 10. After getting our tickets we headed to the beach, the weather was nice, so why not wait for my 3 Spanish friends and the 3 girls coming from Malmö/DK enjoying the sun? After a while sitting near Bettans Bar I suddenly heard Marie’s voice, I was like “what?” I am not sure if they had been playing for a while already, if so, I didn’t realise until I heard Marie’s voice: Rehearsal! Some curious Swedes and me headed to Bettans to try to see the band. I had always wanted to see / hear a rehearsal and there they were! Tylösand, sun, beach and Roxette. I was wondering when would I wake up from this dream…
After a while Poli, Saar and Stina arrived. I informed them about the rehearsals, and we thought they had ended them, but then suddenly they played “How do you do!”. We were all “huh! they are playing THIS song?”. It was just a preview of what the concert a few hours later would be.
I had booked a table for 2 at Leif’s Terrace for dinner at 7 pm, which was the time the doors at Leif’s would open as well, so we headed to the hotel. Right on time my Spanish friends arrived, so we all went in a few minutes after 7. Of course, some people were already sitting by the fence front row. Txiqui kept a place for me (thanks!!) while I was eating at the terrace. We got a nice table, with a great view over the stage, which was perfect for Connie, since she didn’t want to stand in the crowd.
At about 9 pm I went to the front since it started to get full of people. The atmosphere was great, many people, and many Swedes wanting to be close to the stage!!! I got to meet Ted, I think we had seen eachother shortly at GT’s concert in 2004, but had never really talked to him before. A pleasure!

And now starts the interesting part for you. The concert started about 15 minutes late, at 10:15pm. We were all very nervous, excited, shouting for Roxette, and finally there they were! The show started like a bomb with the “yeah yeah yeah” to Dressed for Success. It was an explosion of happiness, light, guitars, drums, Marie’s voice. The version was similar to the one during Per’s tour last year. Of course, with one BIG difference, MARIE!!! Actually, as you check the setlist, the whole show felt a bit like a recicled Party Pleaser concert, keeping the Roxette songs which worked so well, and adding other Roxette songs instead of Per’s. I don’t mean it negative at all. The show worked last year, the songs rocked, so why wouldn’t it WITH Marie? Of course, we also got some songs we didn’t get to hear with Per solo, and some surprises.

A funny thing during Dressed happened, people started to do the typical clapping before Marie and Malin did, and she laughed when she saw it. Marie and Per and the whole band didn’t stop laughing and smiling the whole time, Marie recognised the people on the front and waved to them or made her typical eyebrow-up move like “Hey!”. I think it was good some fans made it to the show, good for motivation, good for the mood. You could really feel we also give them something.
Sleeping in my car was next. People kept on jumping and shouting as crazy as they had done with D4S.  Marie looked quite surprised with the response and let us sing alone for a while. Before Opportunity Nox Per spoke some words. Explained the concert was the main rehearsal before the tour start on Saturday and that they would play old and even older songs. Right after ON we got to hear a rocky version of The big L, in the style of the other 3 songs. People still going crazy. These 4 songs were a great warm-up, both for the audience and for the band, who seemed a bit bit nervous at the beginning, but I think everything settled after this great start.
Time to calm down a bit with WICF. No, I don’t remember if Marie forgot the lyrics 😉 I was just taken to another world by her voice.. which was TOP. I gotta say I didn’t quite realise Malin until then, well, yes, I only had eyes for Marie and Per to this point I think. Sure I had seen Malin when she stepped on the stage, but.. then I realised how good she and Marie complete eachother on stage, not only voice-wise but also with the dancing and backup. Malin was having FUN and people who would look at her would feel that.
Another fan-favourite: She doesn’t live here anymore. This time with Marie, which just gave it the perfect touch.
Another Party-pleaser great song: 7-20-7 followed by an incredible Perfect day, which Per announced mentioning MP’s great song writing skills. It felt as if Marie was singing a capella, with Christoffer on slide guitar. Tears!! Here the calm-acoustic part started. Per announced the next one from “Joyride times”, and what do we hear? Things will never be the same! How many times did I cry listening to this song on Tourism and .. yes.. tears again. With “time to go Hollywood” Per introduced IMHBL, which everybody sang so loud Marie let us sing quite a long while. The song started acoustic and then it went on normal as we know it.
Marie left the stage as Per announced a song he did solo and with Roxette, of course, it could only be Stupid. It was followed by Do you wanna be my baby. Both of course rocked. One might think why does he sing solo songs during a Roxette tour? Well, sure they could have sung 2 other Roxette songs, but then there would be no meaning for this “break” without being a break. The break is obviously meant for Marie, clever way of dealing with it, it would look a bit weird to hear 2 Roxette songs without her, so why not Per’s solo? We always wanted to listen to the stuff from TWATG live more often, so here we have it! And these are two of the best songs on the album, so what more can we ask for?
Marie stepped on the stage again and Per started to introduce a song explaining that they are a modern band with a website, and that they asked their fans through the website which songs they would like to hear live. To their surprise, #1 was not Joyride or The look as they thought, but “this song”. At this stage I was already guessing where this was going. I knew what was #1 on Roxetteblog “contest”. And then a very nice version of Silver blue started. I think I kept my mouth open for a few seconds. What a wonderful version of Silver blue!!! When Marie started to sing tears run down my eyes again. I had always wanted to listen / see this song live, and the dream was coming true!
The song was followed by Fading, another great song I think we don’t get to hear live so often. Marie’s voice perfect.
And another surprise which Per himself introduced as a song they don’t use to play live. How do you do! which rocked big time, I think they were surprised themselves when people went crazy to this song. The first part of the show finished with two Roxette classics Dangerous and Joyride. The band came back after a short while to perform Listen to your heart, The Look, a cover of Steppin’ Stone, which we already heard during Per’s tour, and finished the show with Church of your heart, a very calm version with Clarence on guitar and Pelle on tambourine, and of course, Per and his harmonica. The band received a great ovation and you could see they were very touched by the great response.

After the show I chatted a bit with my Spanish friends, and the 3 girls. We were all very happy and already planning the concert next Saturday. Same city, same band, much more magic friends. See you there! I know some people stayed at Leif’s until late, since there was a party going on: Åsa’s and Gabriel’s birthday party.

In this article you’ll find links to videos and photos.