80's Rewind Festival (Day 2) - Henley on Thames
Live Review

80’s Rewind Festival (Day 2) – Henley on Thames

Day two of the 80’s Rewind festival finds a lot of people scurrying around at an early hour getting clean and dressed and ready. Water is the first thing on a lot of people’s minds. The heat is quite unbearable already and with very few clouds in the sky a hat is in order for most bods. Extra layers of sun cream are applied and then people go off in search of nourishment. The entertainment isn’t on until 2pm. So at least there is time to get fairly organised.

Chas and his Band open up Day 2. He’s a cheery bloke and happy to plonk away on his keyboard to an already amassed crowd. Another easy start to the day. It may have to go like this for some people as the effects of the night before may still be with them and the scorching sun isn’t going to help them get any better.

The Blockheads featuring Phill Jupitus are up next and try to be a little bit more punk and rock n’ roll than many we have seen so far this weekend. May Ian Dury rest in peace, cause the thought of him turning in his grave is likely if he heard the vocal work going on here. It is at times a bit of a shambles. Listening to “What a Waste” without an angry man behind the microphone just didn’t cut it. This is not to last though as the Christians come on and put in a beautifully serene show. Some times it is just all about the hits that strike chords with people, and frankly the Blockheads don’t match that here this weekend.
Nik Kershaw has no worries in the world except maybe the sun shinning in his face. Thank god for dark sunglasses and the ironic fact that he ended with “I Won’t let the Sun Go Down on Me.” He also covered his own song made famous by Chesney Hawkes (guess which one), and also “Wouldn’t it be Good” are big hitters with the crowd. We are definitely in the electro pop world of the 80’s again now and the crowd have become much more alive and there is dancing everywhere.

Midge Ure comes on and shows the crowd firstly that he wrote some absolutely stunning work including a song he wrote made famous by Visage(guess which one) but also that his voice still soars long and far. Their is united clapping throughout “Vienna”, and a huge cheer at the end once he has finished with “Dancing with tears in my Eyes.”

Not an easy act to follow, but Howard Jones pulls it off with his more soulful singing and branded synth pop. Coming out from behind his big Roland at regular intervals to clap the crowd on, Jones is perhaps not as highly ratted in the world as he should have been. A definitive act for sure, but all but forgotten in some areas of clubs. It is also at this stage where certain people lose all their battery power from their cameras and curse the skies that they had brought more spares.
Rest assured the rest of the day continued in bliss through T’Pau, Go West, Paul Young, ABC, Sister Sledge and eventually reaching it’s climax with Gloria Gaynor. The great news is that they continue to tour with the Here and Now team and it is worth catching. But if you can then it is well worth doing the festival which obviously caters for more acts over a whole weekend. And if they book the same spot as this year then they couldn’t do things anymore right. Especially if you are escaping the city.

Each act has their own sound to bring; their own hits to play and the reception they receive is clearly from those who like the acts and not those who are looking for a cheap laugh at the 80’s. If anything I was surprised not to see as many Mullets as you’d hope for. But people did dress in style for the event. There was not shortage of pink tops, wrist and headbands, and of course crimped hair!

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