Christmas Show 2007 - Shepherds Bush Empire London (18 Dec 2007)
Last modified: 18 Dec 2007
Venue: Shepherds Bush Empire London
Author: Dave Wood
Date: 18 Dec 2007
It was a week before Christmas and all was dark. A cheer rose through the stillness as five shadowy figures emerged onto the dimly lit stage. A collective intake of breath, a stifled laugh, some bemusement. Was it pantomime season at the Shepherds Bush Empire? "Oh no it wasn't". This was the Delirious? Christmas Show 2007 - fancy dress style.
Although it was a hard to tell who was behind some of the costumes, judging by the instruments they picked up it seemed safe to assume that 'Batman' was in fact Stu G and the hairy Gorilla was otherwise known as Stew Smee. Also gracing the crowd with his presence was none other than Pope Jon T, a very convincing Austin Powers (aka Tim) and an ambulance driver who underneath his large black curly wig and moustache could just possibly be mistaken for the lead singer of a band known as Delirious?, indeed it was Mr Martin Smith.
As Batman pranced around stage performing his own guitar led theme tune, these five costumed musicians got down to business. Bliss opened the evening, making a welcome and raucous return to the setlist. Soon it was time for more loud guitars in the form of new song Stare The Monster Down. The more familiar Rain Down came next, giving the crowd a chance to warm their vocal chords on a very cold night.
Solid Rock eased its way into the show, with Martin turning into megaphone-man and blasting the crowd with his singing. God Is Smiling may still be considered a new song, but with most of the crowd having downloaded it from the band's website they knew all the words and sang it to perfection. Martin announced that the next song was the title track from their new album due next year, as they launched into Kingdom Of Comfort.
Take Off My Shoes can never be described as anything less than stunning, and although it was a little hard to take the band seriously given their choice of outfits tonight, the song still brought a hushed sense of worship driven reverence across the crowd. Next up was another new song, We Give You Praise, starting as a quiet call to God before turning up a notch on the intensity scale.
Martin and Stu took up positions on a couple of stools on stage to recreate the version of Silent Night that they recently made available for download on the Delirious? website. In the background Jon loitered with his bass keyboard to add further depth to the song. Remaining on his stool, this time alone, Martin spoke to the crowd about his new baby daughter before dedicating There Is An Angel to her, saying "This is for Mary". The beautiful solo ballad was met with an emotional applause.
History Maker rang out next to keep the show on track, and Martin ventured into the crowd to sing a few lines, only to return minus one of his shoes. Well, what can he expect when he'd earlier told the crowd to "Take off my shoes"? Keeping the momentum going, Paint The Town Red with its blinding red lights, came screaming out across the crowd. Contrastingly Delirious? moved on into Majesty and the incredible new song My Soul Sings.
Returning from their encore break, Delirious? managed to fit two further new songs into the set. The boisterous Give What You Got followed by the gentle All God's Children, as the crowd joined in to sing "All God's Children, we will sing hallelujah". Towards the end of the song the band merged into Christmas favourite Oh Come All Ye Faithful as a snow storm fluttered down from the highest balcony. The Christmas Show had once again delivered an evening of festive fun and musical excellence.