Review – Here and Now

They say that you can take the girl out of the ’80s but you can’t take the ’80s out of the girl. If ever there was proof needed of this maxim you only had to look as far as the crowds gathered at Cardiff International Arena on Sunday night to witness the best of the decade.
It was billed as the greatest hits of the past three Here and Now tours and, featuring no fewer than 10 chart-topppers from yesteryear, this was a veritable nostalgia fest. There is no getting away from the ’80s – however much we want to forget the years of visible exuberance and wealth, there’s always something left to remind us. And with the recent revival of the worst of the decade’s fashion mistakes there probably has been no better time than to round up the big names and the heart-throbs of the day and put them back on tour.
There is something slightly sad at seeing the huge names of 20 years ago still shouting out the same songs – Ben Volpeliere-Pierrot I’m talking to you. But there’s also something slightly wonderful at hearing the same tunes that used to mean so much, again.
I was a young and impressionable teenage when T’Pau released China In Your Hands, and I admit it I loved it. I haven’t heard it for years. And when the memorable tune fills the hall, Carol Decker opens her mouth and the hairs on the back of my neck start to stir. It’s pure magic.
Nick Heyward – yes that Haircut 100 heartthrob – ABC, Paul Young and Howard Jones all had more or less the same effect.
But if we were handing out awards for services to artistes who still believe in their music then they have to go to Heaven 17 and Kim Wilde, both of whom blasted out a hell of a set complete with their best works.
Wilde performed on the first and third Here and Now tours and stole the show after 15 years of not performing. She did the same this time round – and in skintight leather – raising the question why didn’t she top the bill instead of a slightly croaky Paul Young?