Hamburg, Germany, the best show so far on tour! And that was a seated gig! If all seated gigs are like this, I’m very much into them. Once the tour was announced and we could see there were several seated concerts, we thought OK, the setlist would probably be too slow, full of ballads, so the seats might be because of that. Then we saw the setlist at the first show and realized there is a great flow in the mix of ballads and uptempo or midtempo songs. So when we reached the first seated concert in the schedule, we got curious how it would work out. Should we stand up? Should we stay seated? What is the rule at the venue? Are we allowed to stand up anyway? If we stand up, when should we? First world problems, I know…
The show in Hamburg was held at a concert hall, a beautiful building. The soundcheck started at appr. 5 pm again and those who met Per in town before he left for the soundcheck got lucky, because Mr. G was in a very nice mood, stopping to sign stuff and fans could also take pictures with him.
Since it was a seated gig and we had our fixed spots, no one was really queueing in front of the venue. Once we arrived we could take it easy, enter the building, check out the merchandise, grab some drinks, chat with other fans. That’s a big advantage of seated events.
This time the support act was again Lee MacDougall. Great guy, really. He was much fun on stage in Hamburg too and he even changed 2 songs in his short setlist. Well, this is how people can get to know his music. He mentioned that in Leipzig he said he is the biggest Roxette fan in the UK, but after the show a guy from the UK, called Huw stepped to him and said that actually HE is the biggest fan in the UK, so Lee corrected himself in Hamburg and said that since Huw is here, he can only tell he is the biggest fan in England.
Already during the support act it was a bit strange to be sitting. I was sitting in the front row and the stage was a bit too high for looking up there without having problems with your neck after. So the thought of standing up got stronger and stronger each second. Haha. Another thing that made me think we should stand up was that hey… the setlist starts with The Look, c’mon! How could you stay seated during The Look?! I mean even the royal family showed it long ago that it just doesn’t work. 😉
Even if Per said after Leipzig that they ”got a few more things to check out in Hamburg” regarding the setlist, there was only a slight change. Listen To Your Heart got moved to the 2nd encore, but otherwise the running order stayed the same. 20 songs. After talking to some of the band members later, it seems to stay like this, since 22 songs both Per and them all found too long. Oh well… ask a fan anytime, we wouldn’t have enough of a 30-song-long setlist either. Let’s hope that at least it stays 20 until the end of the tour and it doesn’t get even less, as it happened during last year’s tour.
1. The Look
2. Milk And Toast And Honey
3. Crash! Boom! Bang!
4. Dressed For Success
5. She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio)
6. Spending My Time
7. I’m Glad You Called
8. Small Town Talk
9. I Have A Party In My Head
10. It Must Have Been Love
11. Opportunity Nox
12. The Big L.
13. Fading Like A Flower
14. Doesn’t Make Sense
15. How Do You Do! (in a medley with No. 16)
17. Queen Of Rain
19. Listen To Your Heart
20. The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye
So, back to the first world problems of standing up, when the gang hit the stage a bit after 9 pm and started playing The Look, appr. 5 seconds passed and the whole concert hall was standing. Woohoo! That defined the mood of the crowd and I think it guaranteed the success of the complete show. Also, it probably gave even more energy to the band. 150% energy on and off stage, I can tell. And the level dropped to 120% during the ballads. Haha. Most of the crowd stayed standing during the whole gig, but also those who ”sat down” were sitting on the upper edge of their seats and only during the ballads and talks in between the songs. Once an uptempo song came, everyone got on their feet again. Great vibes! It was fantastic being part of that crowd!
After The Look, Per talked to the audience while drinking his ginger tea and said he didn’t play in Hamburg since 2015 and asked who was there. Tons of people shouted in the crowds they were there. Nice.
He moved on digging in that deep box of Roxette songs and they played 2 ballads, Milk And Toast And Honey and Crash! Boom! Bang!. Both of them sounded great and the audience liked them a lot. After the ballads, Per tried to throw his acoustic pick to the crowd, but it got probably stuck to his hand so it landed on stage very close to himself. It happens. We were laughing and while Micke N-S brought Per his guitar he plays during speed-up song Dressed For Success, he was kidding him showing how he throws a plectrum. DFS was loved, as well as She’s Got Nothing On! Constant party mood in the crowd and madness on stage! Even 1 drumstick of Andreas flew to the edge of the stage at the end of the song. Per said he is getting too old for this. Someone in the crowd shouted we too. Haha. Per heard it and said you too are definitely getting old.
In the talking before Spending My Time Per mentioned he wrote 2 songs in one afternoon. The first one was Joyride, then he had some tea and biscuits and then he wrote the next one. The crowd sounded very happy to hear SMT and Helena got applauded loudly.
2 more ballads came, I’m Glad You Called and Small Town Talk with Chris in the 2nd verse again. Pure magic!
Showing how fab the crowd was, when the band started the intro to I Have A Party In My Head, the audience started singing Opus’s ”Live Is Life”, not just the Na Na Nana Na part, but the complete chorus. Per laughed and pointed at the audience while looking at the band, then talked into the mic saying this sounds great by the way, however, this coming song is from the Son of A Plumber album. He was glad that the crowd recognized that one.
It Must Have Been Love was next, Magnus’s favourite track (including The Beatles, The Eagles, Fleetwood Mac, Frank Zappa and even Milli Vanilli). Per said he tried to avoid to play it, but Magnus said he has to play it, he kills Mr. G otherwise. Per said he knows and it’s scary. Good they played it. The audience burst out into a loud sing-along.
Then came the party section again, with Opportunity Nox and The Big L. and these 2 songs rocked big time in Hamburg too. Per said ”getting ready for the weekend, right”. The ”bringing me down to my knees” part of TBL was funny, because since we had a bigger space in the front between the stage and the front row without fence or anything else, we could really get down to our knees. Almost. Haha. This time I was on the left side of the stage and loved how Ola and Malin-My came to the front to rock their instruments during TBL.
Before Fading Like A Flower, Per and Magnus talked about the ’90s again. Magnus said he doesn’t just remember the ’90s, he IS the ’90s. Wherever the ’90s went, he was there before. Haha. How Helena sang the song in Hamburg sounded a bit different vs. the first 2 gigs. I would say her version got more powerful from getting the energy from the wonderful vibe of the gig. Fantastic!
Doesn’t Make Sense was a blast again. I love the whole song. Beautiful lyrics, great PG vocals, how he sings ”nose” is still killing me and the ending where Chris and Andreas go crazy is one of the greatest parts of each show.
In the band presentation Per mentioned he is extremely lucky to have this band with him. Magnus he found in a flea market, he said. Haha.
How Do You Do! and Dangerous were very much welcomed by the audience to have some more party. HDYD had the teaser intro this time and the crowd started singing the song before Per started it. No one could believe the gang went off stage after these 2 songs. The audience didn’t stop clapping and shouting, waiting for them to come back on stage.
Then the band members appeared one after another and Per came back as well to play Queen Of Rain and Joyride in the first encore. Since the audience was whistling, Andreas tried to whistle using his hands too, but wearing gloves, it just couldn’t happen. It was funny though. I love how Per and Chris interact during the intro to Joyride. After these two songs the gang went off stage again, but the audience went crazy to have them back. And so they came to sing 2 more tracks in the 2nd encore.
This time Listen To Your Heart was moved to the 2nd encore, but the closing song remained The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye. Helena was very happy to receive the love of the crowd after LTYH. Loud applause she got. And TSHTSG, well… keeps on playing in my head… again and again. Tütütütürütü. Awesome version!
Per closed the show with saying ”hope to see you again very soon”. Let’s see what happens, but with such a band and such an audience anything can happen! 😉
Sven Lindström was there in the crowd too. He liked the show and said he will probably see another one Sweden.
Åsa wasn’t there at the gig. It would have been great if someone filmed this concert for a DVD actually. Hard to top, but there are more gigs to come, so let’s see!
Hamburg tonite. Oh yeah! Thanx everyone for showing up and singing along. Wonderful feedback on every song, love that! Extra special thanks for the Party In My Head-intro (yaknowwhatImean…theunmentionablesong….). Have to come back to Hamburg again and again, it’s addictive!!!!! I’ve had two great days here, checking out Anton C’s fab exhibition and just enjoying myself in the sunshine. Brussels tomorrow. Rise and shine everyone! Lots of love from P.
All pics in the article are taken by Patrícia Peres.
More photos & TV reports: