Madness is a phenomenon.
There is something very unique about Madness which makes huge swathes of middle-aged men don a £6 fake Fez and dance (yes dance) albeit to a very similar upbeat march
But whatever it is that takes Madness that One Step Beyond (sorry) it is very infectious. Almost as soon as they hit the LG Arena stage in Birmingham everyone was on their feet and most of the room dancing.
Frontman Suggs is clearly at home on the stage, his friendly chat puts the crowd at ease and he is the leader of the Madness dances. Fans were treated to two hours of their heroes last night. with a number of tracks from the new album, Oui Oui, Si Si, Ja, Ja, Da Da, including Death of a Rude Boy in the encore.
But no-one could have complained that past favourites and hits were not included. The band ripped through such classics as House of Fun, Baggy Trousers, Our House and It Must Be Love to take the delighted and energetic crowd into the encore.
A sing-along to Tom Jones’ Delilah had the whole arena in strong voice and was a highlight.
The encore brought the house to a frenzy with the wild Madness and they finished on a classic Night Boat to Cairo which sent the audience congo-ing out into the night.
By Diane Davies