Christmas Show 2006 - Shepherds Bush Empire London (15 Dec 2006)
Last modified: 15 Dec 2006
Venue: Shepherds Bush Empire London
Author: Dave Wood
Date: 15 Dec 2006
Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without Christmas trees, Christmas lights, Christmas presents and of course the Delirious? Christmas show. Ten days to go till the big day itself and the Delirious? boys had once again put together a seasonal treat in the shape of their traditional Christmas Show in London. Regular attendees, over the eight years since this essential part of Christmas became established, will have come to expect several things. Great music, a festive twist and more than a few surprises. Needless to say, tonight had them all. In abundance.
Starting with a familiar line up from their recently completed Mission Bell European Tour, Delirious? appeared from the wailing air raid sirens to launch into Here I Am Send Me. No surprises so far, and neither were there any when Rain Down showed its face as the second number. But it was during the third song of the night that things started to get interesting.
Teasing the crowd a little, Martin announced that some good friends of the band were about to join them on the stage. He eventually revealed their identities as Carrie and David Grant, of TV fame. Dressed in her trademark flamboyance, Carrie appeared closely followed by husband David, and proceeded to act as backing vocalists to Martin's Solid Rock. As the two guest swayed in perfect synchronisation, clearly well rehearsed, they added appropriate ooh's and la's to the delight of the crowd.
Heading back into more familiar territory, Delirious? continued with Now Is The Time, followed by the intense Miracle Maker. As the song came towards the end, Martin could be seen to fall first to his knees, closely followed by lying flat on his back as Stu demonstrated his guitar finesse. Take Off My Shoes was next, and another chance for Stu to dazzle everyone with his stunning guitar solo. But he was not the only star shinning through the song. Jon's bass boomed, Tim's piano delighted and Stew's drums thumped until Martin's carefully cried vocals could barely be heard.
History Maker was next with its incredible backing video of mock newspaper front pages, telling the tale of the song and showing photos of some of the history making fans. As Delirious? prepared to launch into the next track, Martin yelled out "There's only one Stu G!" as the G-man launched head long into the opening strains of Paint The Town Red.
Getting back into the seasonal swing of things, Martin, Tim, Stew and Jon huddled together on a platform in the middle of the stage. Donning Santa hats they pulled out their instruments. Tim with his mini Casio keyboard and Stew with his snare drum, suddenly Stu G walked onto the stage looking a little unorthodox. As he carried a surf board and bucket and spade, and wearing sunglasses, he explained that he had been told to dress for Christmas. As he was planning on being on a beach in Sydney for the festive season, he claimed his attire was entirely suitable. With the puns over, it was time for the first Christmas song of the night. Blue Christmas was the tune chosen, and with words on the big screen the crowd joined in heartily.
Metamorphis brought some order back to proceedings, and Majesty brought a sense of reverence to the evening. But mid way through the song it was time for the next surprise. Unannounced a queue of men and women, all dressed in black, appeared from either side of the stage and assembled on a series of raised platforms on the stage. Delirious? had brought with them an entire choir, and as they added backing vocals to first Majesty and then Our God Reigns, they also brought power and energy transforming the songs into something even more amazing than normal.
With the song finished, it was time for Delirious? to leave the stage, returning to start their encore with All This Time. Moving straight into Stronger, the band were again joined on stage by the choir to sing the ending chorus. With time slipping away, there was time for just one more song. How better to finish the Christmas show than with a Christmas carol. But being Delirious? it was never going to be 'just' a carol. This was Hark The Herald Angels Sing with the full rock-band guitars and drum treatment, like you've never heard before. Half way through the song, the venue seemed to fill with falling snow as confetti floated down from up high over everyone present.
You'd think they'd run out of ideas to make the Christmas show special, but every year Delirious? come up with something new. Yet another stunning performance from the Delirious? lads, with more than a nod to the Reason for the Season.