Review Wonderhall 2021 UB40 with Ali Campbell and Astro paint Lytham Hall red and tell crowd performing is a real labour of love
Memories don't go. And just like a fine wine, sweet soul sounds, a good old jammin session, that classic soul-reggae and plenty of festival vibes left the audiences of Wonderhall feeling great.
Time spent in large company is beginning to feel less odd and more like the old and under the clear skies, twinkling lights and a glowing August moon at Lytham Hall UB40 featuring Ali Campbell and Astro certainly helped in bringing back those good times of live music with 'big love.'
More than four decades after entering the music scene and bringing their reggae sound to the main stage in the 80s and 90s with a string of hits, frontman Campbell and Astro are out to prove the genre is still burning strong. And they did just that on night two of the inaugural Wonderhall event.
Some festival-goers may have been caught out by the evening chill that descended across the show arena for the main event of the night but all the more reason to bounce, side step and dance to early numbers which included One in Ten, the 1981 release from their second album Present Arms and a cover of The Chi-Lites 1974 UK hit 'Homely Girl.'
The crowd truly in the groove , it was Astro's turn to throws in his signature 'Sing Jay' offering for an energetic performance of 'Rat In Mi Kitchen' which echoed around the show field.
Their supporting band proved some outfit and the cheers rang out again as the opening melody played out for Eric Donaldson's 'Cherry Oh Baby' and 'Groovin' upping the party tempo.
With the build up of the atmosphere in such a fashion - the abrupt finish to the set seemed a little odd. No statement to the crowd, no goodbye - you could see the looks between the younger generations, who had clearly come along to hear the band’s most recognised songs.
The fear was short lived as minutes later as the band returned to the stage, they got what they wanted - an encore of three. That classic wind synthesizer instrumental of Kingston Town kicks in and immediately a sense of satisfaction.
Can't Help Falling In Love With You proves one of the best sing-alongs of the night but only until the stage floods red and Campbell gives his final number of the night with Red Red Wine.
The horn section come front stage to keep the energy going right to the end and giving everyone a lasting taste of just how good live music really is.