Just like with Bon Jovi last year, Sunday night was my first Europe live experience. Do not ask me why it took me so long to see both bands perform, I have no idea. A case of always being in the wrong place at the wrong time, one could say.
Well, it certainly was well worth the wait. StoneRider, a band from Atlanta, opened the evening, and shortly before 21:00, the five Swedish musicians stormed onto the stage, starting with “Riches To Rags” and “Not Supposed To Sing The Blues”, from their latest album Bag Of Bones. Wow, the energy emanating from that stage was pretty impressive! Perhaps even more so as Sexy Hubby and I were standing in the first few rows. I was also totally blown away by Joey Tempest’s charisma. I have already commented on his voice in my Bag Of Bones review, but when you add his presence and dazzling smile to the equation, it takes the music experience to the next level. Joey was also chatting and joking with the audience quite a bit throughout the concert, striking the right balance at all times. I also enjoyed witnessing the obvious unity and pleasure to play together the band shares, as well as the moments of complicity: A hand on the shoulder and an exchange of smiles when Joey bumped into bassist John Leven, for example.
The concert was a great song mix of their almost thirty year career. Nostalgia moments with “Carrie” and “Rock The Night”. Sexy Hubby and I delighted that Europe played “New Love In Town”, our wedding song. It was lovely to listen to Joey explaining that it was written in a hospital in London the night his son was born. A great acoustic moment starting with guitarist John Norum playing solo, followed by the whole band sitting on chairs. They treated us to “A Drink And A Smile” from Bag of Bones and “Dreamer”, from their second album Wings Of Tomorrow. My only slight disappointment is that “Sign Of The Times” was not part of the set list.
After almost two hours of concert, the five musicians left… only to come back, of course. The last songs were “Last Look At Eden”, and… can you guess it? Yep, “The Final Countdown”! Did I jump up and down? Absolutely. I believe the last time I did this must have been when the song originally came out…
I apologize for the quality of the photos illustrating this post, as you can see they were not taken with a proper camera. Had I known that we would be so close to the stage I would have brought it along! I hope you will enjoy them all the same.
Thank you Europe for a brilliant evening, and see you next time!