The recent resurgence of interest in Deacon Blue is quite staggering.
Of course, celebrating their 30th anniversary will bring out fans, and former fans in droves. Yet the fact that they are still making new and refreshing music, with the 2016 Believers album receiving great critical acclaim and no doubt attracting new fans, certainly played a part in igniting a whole new, totally unexpected career boost rather than just resting on their laurels.
As always singer Ricky Ross takes the limelight being front and centre, bursting with energy that belies the fact he’s the recent recipient of a bus pass, such was his prowling and cajoling through nearly 2 hours of fast paced Celtic rock.
Opening their set with the driving “I Was Right You Was Wrong” it proved a slow build that suddenly burst into life following the first instantly recognisable bars of “Raintown” a masterpiece of epic proportions with a reaction that set the tone for the rest of the evening.
Not that it was all power and pace. Deacon Blue’s quiet moments are always wistful and full of nostalgia and longing, most evident in a moving “When Will You (Make My Telephone Ring)” which including a refrain into the Chi-lites classic “Have You Seen Her”.
The pace couldn’t continue and fortunately there was a brief moment to catch your breath with a touching moment when Ross, with band mate and wife Lorraine McIntosh celebrated their son Seamus’s 18th birthday
with a song and birthday cake leaving a very embarrassed, yet no doubt proud son.
Back to business, in a varied set, their big hitters obviously received the biggest response from a very vocal crowd with “Real Gone Kid” “Loaded” and “Chocolate Girl” getting the Beatlemania treatment, whilst a sing along “Dignity” provided a fitting encore before ending the evening with a band rendition of Willie Nelson’s “Always On My Mind” and beaming smiles for all those who attended.