Rewind Scotland – The 80s Festival, Perth – live review

Rewind Scotland – The 80s Festival
26th – 28th July 2013

Words: Sally Morrison

‘Rewind Scotland – The 80s Festival’ in Perth, Scotland, was back for its third year running. Once again taking place at the historic setting of Scone Palace in Perthshire; home of The Earls of Mansfield and the crowning palace of the Kings of Scotland.

As well as the usual food stalls, fair ground rides, kids ‘Little Big Top’ and various bars, this year had a welcome addition of the Big Love Inflatable Church. If camp priests, disco music, fake weddings, and innuendoes are your thing then that was the place to be!

The festival was mostly glorious sunshine, with the exception of a torrential downpour on the Sunday – which handily happened before any bands came on stage. Fancy dress was rife all weekend with shades of Day-Glo amongst 80’s nostalgia like Rubik’s Cubes and Banana man.

The festival kicked off with Scotland’s own Red Hot Chilli Pipers. Their rocky bagpipe sound got the party started with a bang!

Mike and the Mechanics had only one original member (Mike Rutherford himself, one of the founding members of the band Genesis), but the new band put on such an excellent performance that it didn’t matter. The two singers had great voices and the band seemed really enjoying playing. We heard some well known hits such as ‘Over My Shoulder” and ‘Living Years” which had people singing along. The highlight had to be when they played ‘I Can’t Dance” – a much loved surprise!

Captain Sensible brought his quirkiness to the proceedings all decked out like a sailor with his traditional red beret. He had the crowd eating out of his hand when he sang ‘Happy Talk”, prancing about in his usually fun style.

Starship rocked things up a little and created a super sing-a-long when they played ‘We Built This City” and ‘Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”.

Rewind Scotland – The 80s Festival, Perth – live review

Heather Small of M People fame lived up to her name; she seemed tiny without her ‘big’ hair! Despite being a 90’s act she was welcomed by the crowd and got a big cheer when she dedicated her song ‘Search for the Hero” to Andy Murray.

Rewind Veteran Rick Astley gave a super fun performance, showing that you don’t have to take gigs seriously to entertain a crowd. Women screamed at their high school heart throb, who is still looking boy faced and pretty despite now being 47! He sung his hits ‘Never Gonna Give You Up” and ‘Together Forever”.

Kim Wilde gave a good show, leaving her most loved hit ‘Kids in America” until last.

Ali Campbell has sold over 60 million records worldwide. A whole generation has grown up listening to Ali’s infectious vocals on classics like ‘Kingston Town”, and (I Can’t Help) Falling in Love”, which were all performed here tonight. They played a fantastic reggae version of Prince’s ‘Purple Rain”, but it was ‘Red Red Wine” that the crowd wanted, which ended up being the biggest sing along of the day.

Rewind Scotland – The 80s Festival, Perth – live review

The Blockheads played a fun set, kicking off with ‘Sex and Drugs and Rock and Roll” and following up with ‘Reasons to be Cheerful” and ‘Hit Me with Your Rhythm Stick”.

Nik Kershaw seemed genuinely happy to be playing at Rewind. The accomplished musician treated us to classics such as ‘Wouldn’t it be good” and ‘The Riddle”, finishing off with a super rendition of ‘I Won’t Let the Sun go Down on Me”.

Despite being asked to play for many years this was Jason Donavon’s first appearance at Rewind Festival. He drew a large crowd into the arena and did not disappoint. He seemed a little nervous at first, but soon relaxed and really got into the swing of things, even jumping down into the pit at one point and high fiving the punters at the front! The biggest sing-a-long of the weekend was when he sang ‘Any Dream Will Do”; the sea of swaying arms was spectacular! We were treated to his classics ‘Sealed With a Kiss”, ‘Too Many Broken Hearts” and of course ‘Especially For you”.

Belinda Carlisle proved she still had her trademark voice by belting out her hits. ‘Circle in the Sand” went down well, and of course ‘Heaven is a Place on Earth” – or should that be ‘Heaven is a place near Perth’?!

The finale was Human League who a last minute replacement for OMD who had pulled out the previous week, they belted out hits including ‘Mirror Man” And they finished with ‘Electric Dreams” and a massive sing along then 5 minutes of fireworks to finish a great weekend.

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