Here’s a thing, 47 years old and never seen stadium rock. This was not deliberate as such, it just never occurred to me to do so. In fact, going to see three ‘80s bands at Newcastle’s arena the other day turned out to be the first gig outside of a pub that I’d been to in something like fifteen years if not more. It was like realising how long it is since you last saw a dentist.
Anyway, thanks to the generosity of an old friend, I found myself at said arena to watch the rock stylings of the bands
So what was it like? Well,
Next were Foreigner who endeared themselves to the audience after a couple of songs by stating bluntly that they didn’t have much time so from now on in they were going to be only doing their big hits. Which they did. And the crowd loved it, even if the lead singer did over-estimate the geordie audience's capacity for remembering the lyrics to the chorus of ‘I Want To Know What Love Is’ and ended up having to shout out the line in advance like a rock pantomime*. Again, highly professional and like Styx, pronounced
*A cheap and cheerful form of rock opera which I for one would pay good money to see
Finally we had Journey, the headline act and as such on for 90 minutes as opposed to the mere hour the other two had been granted each. Their arrival on stage was greeted with great enthusiasm by the audience which slowly dribbled away as the lead singer kept announcing those words nostalgia soaked concert goers of a certain age both loath and fear: ‘And here’s one from our new album.’ One of these appeared to be called 'Spunky Love' though I really hope it wasn't. We left before the end and so I never did get to hear their version of that song people sang at me. Never shall now I suppose.
My companion, who was stopping off in the North East of England on her way to somewhere else, had obtained the tickets because a Foreigner tribute band are playing at her holiday destination. I must ask her which was better.