Review: T'Pau, Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury
[gallery] "It's good to be home," said Carol Decker - and she clearly meant it. With her trademark auburn tresses and striking voice, songstress Decker enjoyed a triumphant homecoming to Shropshire.
Amid much anticipation, this was the night T'Pau returned to their roots and the town where they wrote the songs which propelled them to stardom in the late 1980s.
To mark the 25th anniversary of T'Pau's breakthrough album, the quadruple platinum selling Bridge Of Spies, the band is back on the road, touring venues the length and breadth of the UK.
Their Theatre Severn date always promised to be poignant for 55-year-old Decker and Ronnie Rogers, her fellow Salopian, and they delivered a spellbinding show which delighted the crowd, many of whom were on their feet almost straight away.
Bouncing on stage in a military-style black leather coat, black trousers and studded black knee boots, Decker tore straight into Sex Talk and ran through the hits which once made them Top of the Pops regulars and household names.
Valentine was a highlight and so was Heart and Soul, the band's breakthrough single in 1987 which reached number four in the USA.
As well as belting through the hits, Decker reminisced with the audience, recalling how she and Rogers lived in a damp flat above the Pengwern Boat Club in Shrewsbury where they penned their first album.
She also revealed how she would visit flea markets buying scarves and nik naks on the site that is now Theatre Severn.
For the encore, it was only ever going to be the timeless China In Your Hand.
Decker left the stage and re-emerged in a similar military-style coat - this time in stand out red. And one of the band reappeared in Shrewsbury Town's iconic 1978-79 shirt - a nice touch - before everyone was up on their feet to join in with T'Pau's most famous song.
"We love you Carol," cried the audience.
And she loved them back. She was clearly overcome at returning to her roots and the crowd was only too delighted to welcome her home.
By Stuart Dunn
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