Where the Bands Are (Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, 6 March, 2019)

Last night’s concert with Manfred Mann’s Earth Band in Konserthuset in Gothenburg was a night of nostalgia and numerous guitar and synth solos. As every Bruce Springsteen fan knows, Manfred Mann’s Earth Band setlist usually include the Springsteen covers: Blinded by the Light, For You and Spirit in the Night and last night’s hit parade was no disappointment in this respect.

Captain Bobby Stout (Kindred cover). followed by Spirit in the Night begins the set. It’s a crowd pleasing start and a promise of a good show. A peculiar thing happens when Spirit is finished, Manfred Mann steps out from behind his synthesiser and apologises for playing the song in the wrong tempo and they reprise the first verse.

The band deliver a solid set. Robert Hart and Mick Rogers take turns singing and their voices sound rocky and strong. However, the show loses momentum and intensity due to Mick Rogers’ and Manfred Mann’s numerous solos and large chunks of instrumental improvising sequences that turn up in almost every song.

Blinded by the light

wrapped up like a deuce

another runner in the night

To me, the highlight of the show is the last part of the 13 song set, beginning with the Dylan cover You Angel You followed by For You, Blinded by the Light and Davey’s on the Road (John Simon cover). During the encore when Do Wah Diddy Diddy (the Exiters) and The Mighty Quinn (Dylan) are played, the crowd are on their feet singing, dancing and clapping their hands and while the audience is chanting “Come all without, come all within. You’ll not see nothing like the mighty Quinn” the band bid their farewells and the show is over.

Attending a concert only five days after having shoulder surgery might not be something to recommend. However, I figured since the show was in a venue with seats only, I’d be alright and I was. In fact, I left the venue invigorated!

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