Per Gessle’s Roxette – Brussels, Belgium – 12th October 2018 – #4

Without a day off after the magnificent Hamburg show, Per & Co. performed in Brussels on Friday. They all flew to the Belgian capital and since the connection between Hamburg and Brussels is not the greatest, some of us fans also travelled by the same plane. I must say it was a bit bizarre, listening to the Small Town Talk album on Spotify while sharing the flight with THE artist and his musicians. We all behaved, so we didn’t jump on either Per or anyone else from the band. Not on BoJo either. Haha. We all landed safe and sound and headed to our accommodations.

The doors were to open at 7 pm at the venue, but it was a standing show, so we got there a bit earlier to queue. When we entered we realized that the front row was right in front of the stage, without any fence. The stage was so low you could touch Per’s monitor. I liked it a lot that the balconies were hidden by huge black curtains with lights on them. This way the whole area looked like being covered with stars. Nice view from the stage it must have been. One not too important, but I think interesting detail is that it was the first time I saw much more guys in the crowd than girls. Why in Belgium, no clue.

This time there was no support act. The gig was to start at 20:30 and end at 22:30. The gang started playing at appr. 20:40. The setlist? Stayed the very same as it was in Hamburg the day before.

Setlist:

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
Band presentation
15. How Do You Do! (in a medley with No. 16)
16. Dangerous

Encore
17. Queen Of Rain
18. Joyride

Encore 2
19. Listen To Your Heart
20. The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye

The Look turned out to be a great starter in Belgium too. It can never go wrong! After the song Per talked to the crowd and said he played there 29 years ago ”when you weren’t even born”. ”Or were you here?”, he asked. Some in the audience shouted yes and Per said ”we should go on a cruise together”. He tried to remember anything from that evening, but he couldn’t and Clarence, who was there back then too, he couldn’t remember it either.

Between MATAH and CBB Mr. G told about 1993 when the Roxette team went to Italy. ”Scary thought. Not Italy, the Roxette team”, he said.

With DFS, the gang speeded the tempo up and Per said we’re still young. Oh yes, they are and we are too! It got confirmed during SGNO as well. The intro to it increased the excitement and we partied on. I was standing on the left side of the stage again and Chris and Ola, as well as Per were so close to us when they came to the front to play their guitars. Once Mr. G kicked in the air with his left leg and it felt like there was 1 cm between his leg and my camera. The cam survived. Haha. After the song Per said it’s fantastic he is here, ”thanx to you guys”.

Before playing SMT, a guy shouted ”we love you”. Per smiled, but he still finds it a bit difficult to take compliments. That’s what I saw on his face this time too. He said this is a great day and he had another great day back in May 1990. Mr. G mentioned Åsa in Brussels, that he wrote Joyride thanks to his wife who left a note on the piano saying ”hello, you fool, I love you, bla-bla-bla”. The crowd laughed. Then he took a break he said and took some Swedish icecream, some coffee and then he wrote SMT. Helena got her well-deserved applause after she sang the song.

After IGYC, Per said ”dank u wel” I think (it means ”thank you”) and in reply to that someone shouted ”tack så mycket”. Per was happy both about his own and the shouting guy’s ”thank you”-s. Then Per talked about his Nashville experience before he started playing STT, which of course sounded wonderful at Ancienne Belgique. We definitely need it on a live CD, don’t we? 😉

The intro to IHAPIMH just almost contained na na nana na, but the audience was clapping loudly and enjoyed the song so much.

Before IMHBL Per mentioned that when they started rehearsing for the tour he had appr. 72 songs that he wanted everyone to learn in the band. Magnus said and they did. There was one song that he didn’t really feel like playing, but then he heard it was Magnus’s fave track of all time. Magnus said he had to pay Per to play this song and he stills pay Mr. G every gig. It became a nice sing-along.

Do I have to mention that OppNox and TBL put everyone on fire? On and off stage. I love this part! You could see in the video Åsa recorded from the back how the crowd enjoyed themselves during TBL.

Getting back to the ’90s, before FLAF Per asked Magnus about his girlfriends in the ’90s. Magnus said he didn’t have any. Per said then tell us about his boyfriends. Magnus said he didn’t have any friends at all.

Before DMS Per wanted to say something about the Party Crasher album, but then he said he shouldn’t. Magnus said we’d really love to know and then Per said Magnus blogged about it on www.puke.com. The crowd laughed out loud. The song by the way sounded awesome again and Chris became the definite hero of the night. Poor guy was rocking on his guitar so much that even something got broken on it and it flew over the audience and Christoffer’s hand was also bleeding like hell. Jakob, Christoffer’s technician tried to wipe the blood off with a towel, but it didn’t help much. The guys tried to find some plasters and were trying hard to stop the hand bleeding. Per asked, ”did that make sense?” Haha. Mr. G started introducing the band. Started with Chris who was still bleeding, then moved on to Ola, then Andreas. That was funny, because PG said he called 5 drummers, but 4 couldn’t make it, so that’s how Andreas ended up in the band. Haha. Then Mr. G introduced Clarence, who produced almost every existing Roxette song, even the hits and the B-sides. Then Magnus, Malin-My and Helena were introduced too. And then Per turned to the audience and said: ”And a wonderful crowd, thank you!” In the meantime, Chris got his plasters. Per asked him if he can continue and Chris said the show must go on. The crowd applauded him and shouted woohoo.

During HDYD we had a blast again, the intro teaser worked fine. Then came Dangerous and off they went. The audience didn’t stop clapping or shouting, not even for a second, however, it took a bit longer time now for the band to come back on stage to play the first encore, QOR and Joyride.

The crowd didn’t keep quiet while waiting for the 2nd encore either. They were really loud. And so the gang came up on stage again. Per said the next song he wrote for a friend of his in the ’80s, when there was a bit of a conflict in his friend’s life. LTYH it was, of course. Then the closing song TSHTSG. And it plays in my head again until the next show.

There was a Belgian couple who I met for the first time. We talked a bit before the show and they said it’s the only concert they plan to see on this tour. They have kids and have to work and the logistics are not so easy. After the show we talked again and they loved it so much they started thinking about how to organize things to be able to attend at least one more gig. Oh yeah!

Per after the show:

BRUSSELS: YEEHAA. Back again at the Ancienne Belgique. Haven’t played here for 29 years. Had a blast, dear you! Hot and cozy. Wonderful crowd. Great band. Happy!!!!

See you all in London. Plan A: Got to get some band aid for Chris’s hand…….. Plan B: Call MP! Cheers, P.

All pics in the article are taken by Patrícia Peres.

More photos:
Front View Magazine
Proximus
by WIM

 

Roxette XXX Tour – Antwerp, Belgium (Lotto Arena) – May 29 – #35

Tonight it was already the 35th show on this tour. Last time Roxette played in Antwerp was 6 years ago, during the Night of the Proms happening in 2009.

The band hit the stage with much energy and got the huge crowd of Lotto Arena sing along already with Sleeping In My Car. Marie was on a high, acting much with the fans during the whole show and Per had his batteries fully charged, too.

The crowd was getting wilder and wilder and burst out in a la-la-la-loud sing along. Actually, the party audience made their voice heard all night. Just to quote some of their comments regarding how much they enjoyed the show: ”They still have it!”; ”Still top!”; ”Forever the best!”; ”Roxette is still rocking!”; ”Lots of respect!”; ”Man, I’m reliving my childhood right at this moment! They’re brilliant!!!!” etc. Great to hear all the positive vibes.

One die hard German Roxer, Astrid Lenhard even called her friend, another hardcore fan in Austria, Karin Lessjak (who couldn’t be there at the concert) when Marie and Dea performed Watercolours In The Rain / Paint to let her hear Marie singing via the phone at least. Emotional!

The great Anton Corbijn was there in Antwerp, too. The new monitor engineer, according to Per. Didn’t he mention in an interview that they might make a video for the upcoming single? Hm. Could it be that they will work together with Anton on that? Would be fab! What we know for sure is that he took photos during the concert. Hopefully, we get to see them soon.

After Mr. G found his lost password to Facebook or the internet connection in Belgium got better or just took his time off (it’s not too common he doesn’t post for more than 24 hours 😉 ), he posted this after the show:

ANTWERP UPDATE: Yeehaa! Fab evening in front of a pumped up crowd in a sold out Lotto Arena. Great vibe, lots of familiar faces everywhere. Thanx for making this yet another everlasting memory from Belgium!!!! And hey, now it’s Marie’s beeday!! Cheers! /P

It’s indeed Marie’s birthday already. Hip hip! Some Roxers had the chance to sing her Happy birthday after the show, when she was leaving. They made Marie very happy about it. She smiled while they were singing, waved and thanked the fans so much. She said: “You’re always the best, remember that!” Watch the video of it. Thanx for filming and sharing it, Gyöngyvér Simon!

Next gig is on Monday (1st June) in Dublin, Ireland.

 

Articles and photos

Instagram & Twitter: 1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11;

cuttingedge.be
frontview-magazine.be
nieuwsblad.be
concerts-review.over-blog.com

Videos

It Must Have Been Love
Joyride
Listen To Your Heart & The Look
Familiar faces and sing along talking before Spending My Time
Crush On You & She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio)
The Look + the end
several videos by After Event Productions

Instavideos:
Spending My Time
It Must Have Been Love
Listen To Your Heart
The Look

 

Setlist

roxette_in_antwerp
Pic by shamrockraver Livia

Sleeping In My Car
The Big L.
Stars
Spending My Time
Crash! Boom! Bang!
Crush On You
She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio)
The Heart Shaped Sea
Watercolours In The Rain / Paint
Fading Like A Flower
How Do You Do!
It Must Have Been Love
Dressed For Success
Dangerous
Joyride

Extra:
Listen To Your Heart
The Look

 

World Tour 2011: Tienen, Belgium – July 31 #52

Comment from Per Gessle

Cheers from the gig in Tienen, Belgium. 4-day festival, Rox was headlining Day 4! We had a blast! Marie in top shape, great great crowd, beautiful evening and setting! Thanx for showing up, love to come back here.

At the airport in Brussels w/ Magnus, Chris & wonderful Helena. We just realized that after those 12000 ppl showing up last night in Tienen we have played in front of almost half a million ppl since Feb! Wow! Cheers.

(c) Micke Enne-Esse / Roxette official
(c) Micke Enne-Esse / Roxette official

Setlist

01. Dressed For Success
02. Sleeping In My Car
03. The Big L.
04. Wish I Could Fly
05. She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio)
06. Perfect Day
07. It Must Have Been Love
08. 7twenty7
09. Fading Like A Flower (Every Time You Leave)
10. How Do You Do!
11. Dangerous
Band presentation
12. Joyride (introduced with “Vrolijke Vrienden”)

13. Spending My Time
14. The Look
15. Listen To Your Heart

Misc

That was meant to be the last concert on the World Tour 2011. Over 12,000 people attended the concert.

Articles and photos

Demorgen.be (Review and photo)
Concertnews.be (Review and photo gallery)
Deredactie.be (TV-report)
Thetopofmusic.be (photo gallery)
Svenmichiels.be (photo gallery)
Flickr – nobix (photo gallery)
Flickr – Suikerrock (photo gallery)
Cutting Edge

NOTP tour: A review, part I: Belgium/The Netherlands

After I have seen 14 shows of this hilarious Night of the Proms tour it’s time to write a review about the last eight weeks, starting with my first show on October 23rd in Antwerp, Belgium. It is not only colder outside but also warmer inside of me. I am feeling exhausted, empty and happy at the same time. I don’t feel like writing at all, but with writing everything down I can share my experiences with all of you. Not only the performances changed during these last weeks – especially Roxette’s – but also my point of view has changed a lot. I got a lot more relaxed, especially during the last shows and seeing so many shows helped me to really get the Night of the Proms feeling itself. If I had to choose which show was the best I would certainly pick the second Frankfurt show, not only because of the balloons. But altogether if someone asked me to choose from the Belgium/Dutch or German shows I’d always pick Belgium/Netherlands, maybe I’d even pick Antwerpen. The Belgian shows were extremely good and the audience was much more into it than the German audience which seems to be a bit too old to have a party.. ! So if you want to see a Night of the Proms show next year or whenever, go to Antwerpen. You will love it. My review starts with the five Belgian/Dutch shows I have seen (and drove more than 2500 km):

Ant_2310Antwerpen, October 23rd, 2009

210 km to Düsseldorf, another 230 km to Antwerpen = 440 km

We arrived early since we wanted to have some time for shopping. Well – the city isn’t what you call beautiful so it wasn’t worth it at all. At the Sportpaleis we meet some fans who are already waiting for the doors to open. I remember a Brazil guy, Ivan and some Russians. Well – if you know who you are leave a comment here so I can add your names. Unfortunately all we got were seating tickets, faaaar away from the stage. Unfortunately not far away enough to not notice Marie’s problems during Wish I could fly. Sharon den Adel rocked the house before Roxette and I really liked the Belgian audience. On this first show Marie and Per appear on stage together – out of the blue, practically speaking. While Per just has to make one step Marie has to find her way to the microphone. Seeing this my first thought is: “Hmm, why did she agree to do it like this?” She can barely see something and has problems to walk over. It’s obvious. Wish I could fly starts and I am really nervous. Marie sings “Halfway through the night” three times in a row and I feel totally sorry for her. Nothing I can do from that far off. All I can do is hope that she doesn’t care and she really sings the rest of the song quite ok. My friend and I are worried about her in the break but she proves us wrong. She totally rocks her socks off during the second set. She’s great on The Look and Joyride and she sings so good on It must have been love and Listen to your heart. Yet – I feel like I need to support her. Unfortunately we have to go back to Düsseldorf in the night and arrive late (or early) at 3 am. We could have been there earliert but we waited for Roxette at the backstage entrance and I was really happy that Per decided to come to us after the show. We were not many, maybe around 10. He told us that Marie has a sore throat and doesn’t feel well. He signs stuff, everyone gets a photo and we chat a bit. When he left (with the words: “We’re here tomorrow. Same songs, different lyrics”, I won’t ever forget it, haha) everybody was happy. We didn’t even notice that Marie passed by while we were talking with Per. So, arriving in Düsseldorf I decided to go back to Antwerp the next day. Not to let me entertain. No, just to support Marie. I didn’t even have a ticket and I just drove 230 km without knowing if I could get in in the end. Fortunately I could..

Antw_2410Antwerpen, October 24th, 2009

230 km from Düsseldorf to Antwerpen, 230 km back to Düsseldorf, another 210 km back home = 670 km

I was lucky! Evgeny already had tickets for Antwerp but couldn’t go because of his Visa problems. His friend Emil sold me Evgeny’s ticket. If I didn’t say thank you until now: Thank you! So I didn’t have to worry about a ticket. My friend couldn’t join me so I was alone this time – just to meet some friends in Antwerpen. I arrived early (14.00) and only a few people were there. Since I had a standing ticket for this night I knew everything would be more exciting than the night before. And since there was a huge catwalk in Belgium and The Netherlands we even had to decide whether to stand on the left or the right. Usually the left side was always Marie’s and the right side Per’s. Soon a lot of people stood on the left of the entrance so we decided to try it on the right. Good choice – we made it to the front row and could stand next to each other and in the end it turned out that there’s no left or right anymore. Both standing quite in the middle of the stage everybody could see Per AND Marie, left or right – it didn’t matter (except one wanted to catch Per’s guitar picks). My decision to come back was the right to make. Again – on Wish I could fly both appeared together and Marie had to make another 10 steps to the mic, this not working at all. Again – she had problems with the text but everyone around including me screamed and sang with her, helped her through this song and we showed our support with all we had. During the ballads I kind of had the feeling that she was looking for help in the audience. She looked at us all the time, it was like she was trying to read the text from our lips. Well, we did our best. Even worse – her voice was just not there. We felt so sorry for her. She must have been totally ill that night but we could see she was fighting like hell and we loved her even more for this. Still – I couldn’t stop worrying and I couldn’t enjoy the Roxette performance at all. This was the worst of all 14 shows I have seen. I fellt sorry for Marie and hoped the several thousand people in the Sportpaleis weren’t too disappointed, especially since I knew she can do much better and she proved it only some weeks later. Unfortunately the most videos on YouTube you find when you search Roxette and Night of the Proms are from this night. Bad luck… or Murphy’s law. Whatever you want to call it.

Arn_1311Arnhem, November 13th, 2009

600 km in total

This show didn’t turn up in my personal “schedule” until three days before the concert. Well – we decided to just go there to “have a look” and to give some presents to the band and Per – one of these being the Roxopoly game. Well – unfortunately I checked ebay right in time and found tickets for that night. Too cheap to not buy it (15 Euro) and we decided to join the show. But more important were our presents and we had no idea how to hand them over since we didn’t find a particular backstage entrance. I had luck again: my seat was next to the stage entrance for the artists and after the show was over I waited for the band and asked if they could come out to get some presents. They could – and it was damn relaxed that night. We were only around 5 fans, we had all the time in the world to talk and when I showed my Roxopoly to Christoffer he helped us to make Per come out so that I could give it to him directly. Well – the rest you see on the video on YouTube.
The show itself was much better than three weeks earlier. Marie’s voice was back, she looked a lot more confident on stage and she even improvised during The Look, bringing the Hey Jude “Na na na na” up for the first time. We loved it. The sound wasn’t very good, maybe because they divided the venue in two parts and the voices just vanished in the “empty” part of the venue. Who knows..! Hard to rate this show, wasn’t the best, wasn’t the worst. The audience was so-so, too. So in the end it was worth the trip because of our presents and just because of that road trip feeling – we love to drive hundreds of kilometres not knowing what will happen when we arrive. But the three of us were happy – both going and coming back home: saturday morning around 4 am.

Read moreNOTP tour: A review, part I: Belgium/The Netherlands

Changes in the setlist

After adding “Sleeping in my car” to the playlist on Party crasher tour’s Cologne show (April 27th), now was a high time for Son of a plumber’s single – “Hey Mr DJ (Won’t you play another love song)” in Gent, Belgium (May 2nd). According to Per at gessle.com, the whole show was a blast with many international fans from Spain and Argentina in the audience.