The Sage, Gateshead
10 November 2019
It was the reunion that never seemed likely to happen. Famously, publicly and unexpectedly sacked at the 1993 Ivor Novello Awards ceremony, one could easily have forgiven Marcella Detroit for staying away from any notion of a revival but stranger things have happened. After all, it must have almost equally unlikely Siobhan Fahey would have returned to Bananarama for an extensive UK tour in 2017-8. There were already rumours of a reconciliation between the ‘sisters’ flying around towards the end of the Bananarama tour and they turned out to be true. The release of Singles Party (1988-2019) heralded their return and this followed up with news of new music - which manifested as the Ride Again EP and a tour. Incredible times.
The Sage once again proved to be an excellent venue. The audience didn’t stretch beyond level one but the atmosphere was great. The people all around me were genuinely excited and there was a heavy sense of the expectation in the air.
There were several on-stage references to the split and their strong desire to make new music, plus some semi-joking thoughts on what the future may - or may not - hold beyond the tour.
They certainly went through the card - there is a lot more to their repertoire than Stay - with a powerful and energetic performance, backed up by a very tight band, impressive lighting and scene-setting backdrops. They made an instant and strong connection with the audience and the set list was tailored to build up and bring everyone to their feet around the halfway mark.
It was a triumphant return and I hope they tour again soon.
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