Now considering the tour is still current and if you’re going to see the boys at some point I just want to make it clear this blog/review will be chocker full of spoilers. Just prewarning you now!
So since 2006, I’ve seen Take That 4 times – this could be why I’m a self-confessed Poptart? Yes!
So the first twice were;
2006 – Reunion Tour
2009 – The Circus
(Beautiful World for some reason didn’t include Millenium Stadium)
Both previous were without a certain Robert Williams. Okay, so they had a hologram of him in 2006. But that aside they’ve done well without him. Or had they? With Progress came the announcement that Robbie was back with the band and a tour was then announced, selling out in an hour. More dates were released (obviously!) and the tour became the fastest selling tour of 2011 (in 2010?)
So to my experience of the “That”. As I’ve said, I’ve seen them two tours previous and loved them – as much as a hetrosexual man can. The Circus probably rates as one of my favorite gigs – compare that with the rest and it’s a high approval rating. So what would Robbie bring to the new Take That table?
Well, Robbie does what Robbie does best, show off (the line there borrowed, badly, from Smokey and the Bandit). From the moment he arrived on stage for his own little welcoming set, he owned that stadium. Simple as. With everything else that’s been mentioned about Take That and Robbie, it’s an actual fact that Rob hasn’t played Wales since 2001, which also so happens to be the first gig I ever went to. Ahh memories!
Show wise what more can you ask for. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced a more hormonally charged stadium ever. In fact thanks go to the MS for making sure the women’s toilets outnumbered the men’s. I had to walk right to the end of the walkway whereas normally it’s boy/girl/boy/girl. Even then there were queues, what exactly DO women DO in the roilet? 😉
It felt at times like the stadium would take off with the amount of crowd singing, even though on the first night (oh yes, forgot to mention, I went both nights) when TT asked us (the crowd) to sing the Welsh National Anthem, we duely obliged, but then before the “Gwlad Gwlad” bit, Jason tried to interrupt – Fail! I can assure you though that this was rectified on the second night’s performance.
On the whole, I think the best reaction was always for the “classic” TT songs – Back for Good, Pray, Relight my Fire. The new Robbie included material was okay, it just felt like all people wanted to hear was the anthems – The Could it be magic’s of the TT back catalogue. Personally I like Progress and hearing it live will help it live, if that makes sense. Although if TT are reading this (you never can tell), Big time fail for omitting Happy Now. Okay, so it was included as an instrumental for the Robot (which on the second night didn’t work proper 😉 ) but I’d have loved hearing Happy Now properly live. Next tour maybe?
There was deafening applause as Gary Barlow, Mark Owen, Howard Donald and Jason Orange opened the gig – part of their Progress Live 2011 tour – with their biggest hit to date Rule The World, featured in the film Stardust.
They went on to sing four more of their most popular songs as a four-piece, including Shine, for which they were joined onstage by an Alice in Wonderland-style cast of dancing trees, roller-skating bees and a huge caterpillar. After praising the Millennium Stadium, they encouraged us to sing our National Anthem.
When Robbie finally arrived on stage, he performed a solo set, which kicked off with the anthemic Let Me Entertain You and ended with Angels. His performance was so energetic, that he ripped his trousers.
The final part of the concert opened with The Flood. Dancers performed on a “wall of water” while the band sang from the highest part of the stage before Robbie threw himself off the top via suspension cables.
One of the highlights was a performance of the new single Love, Love, featuring 20 dancers in gas masks, while the mechanical man moved out into the middle of the stadium carrying the band against a futuristic backdrop.
Old favourites Never Forget and Relight My Fire – with Robbie singing Lulu’s part – were saved for the end and the show closed with Eight Letters, which is the final track on the latest album Progress.
While Take That proved in the past that they don’t need Robbie to survive, his contribution to this tour, the biggest in British history, definitely brought a new energy to their performance – but, in places, it did become the Robbie Williams Show.
Fair to say it’s one of the biggest hen parties you’ll ever go to!
TAKE THAT 2006
Rule The World
Hold Up A Light
Sgt. Pepper’s VT
Let Me Entertain You
Come Undone (Take A Walk On The Wild Side)
TAKE THAT ORIGINAL
Million Love Songs/Babe/Everything Changes/Back For Good (piano medley)
No Regrets interpolated into;
Relight My Fire
The tour continues at Croke Park, Dublin on Saturday 18 June and continues till 29 July in Munich.
PHOTOS TO FOLLOW!