The Corrs - Life Cafe - 12.9.04
It's one of the strangest and most memorable weekends in Manchester's musical history. A couple of days earlier Bryan Ferry was performing in front of a Fashion Show, today The Corrs are playing a gig to just 500 people when they're used to playing to 20,000 and the day following this gig Ian Brown will blow away a home town crowd not in a venue, but in an instore gig at HMV. Today though the eyes are all on the Irish as the Corrs step back to their roots and play a venue so intimate that you can almost smell the girls (Century FM's Darren Proctor words, not ours).
With an audience ranging from teenagers through to older couples The Corrs fanbase spans from people who simply love their infectious pop songs through to Irish immigrants who love the way that the Corrs are ingrained into the mainstream in as much as way as Riverdance is. To them this is their cultural history taking a step out of a working men's club and capturing the nations consciousness. While the celebrity count number Coronation Street stars Simon Gregson (Steve McDonald) and Andrew Wyment (Kirk) and Manchester United footballer Gary Neville nothing could have prepared us for the presence of his team mate Roy Keane in the audience. It's surreal moment to see the hard man of football placidly watching The Corrs when you can only but imagine him pumping his fists in the air to the Dropkick Murphy's or House Of Pain.
As the band take to the stage Andrea announces that "Caroline isn't with us tonight. As you may knows she pregnant and is in her third trimester, which means she can't fly". Backed up by a bass player and stand in drummer, Andrea, Sharon and brother Jim set about delivering a crowd pleasing set of hits. After an unfamiliar album track as an opener they brought us the classic "Dreams", originally a cover of a Fleetwood Mac song but perhaps more well known to this generation is Corrs arrangement, followed by "What Can I Do?". An emotional version of "Runaway" even surprises Andrea who appears genuinely touched as the crowd sang the lyrics back to her, "I'm feeling redundant" she admits as the crowd continue to the end of the song. New single "Angels" is archetypal Corrs sticking closely to the formula and still seeming fresh and vital amongst the older classics. Amongst the singles it's two traditional Irish instrumentals which send the floor into a frenzy like a scene from Titanic where Leonardo whisks Kate Winslet down to the lower deck.
An unforgettable gig which serves as a warm up for the selected few for when the band return to play the Manchester MEN Arena on November 7th. You have to ask why they didn't fulfil the cheese quota of the evening and just drop in "Radio" for the listeners of Century FM who could then indeed listen to "Radio" on the Radio when highlights of the show are broadcast later this week.
Post your Alabama 3 reviews / comments on the Message Board
(NB: The message board opens in a pop up so please disable your pop up blocker to view)
For more info on Century FM who arranged this gig