Tubular Bells For Two, Town Hall, Birmingham - review
Two men, 20 instruments and one iconic album: Tubular Bells For Two is a unique display of talent - and a delight to watch.
Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells has sold more than 15 million copies worldwide since its release in 1973, winning a Grammy Award and forming one of the most instantly recognisable film soundtracks of all time.
The landmark concept piece was last night brought to life for Birmingham fans by two Australian musicians whose animated performance saw the Town Hall captivated from start to end.
It was an eccentric and brilliant show, which saw the pair running around the stage barefooted as they performed the album with precision and skill on an array of instruments, ranging from acoustic and electric guitars, to the glockenspiel, keyboards, drums and, of course, tubular bells.
The use of light, colour and smoke excellently punctuated the performance too, highlighting change in tempo and style through the twists and turns of the piece.
A few errors occurred during the gig, such as member Daniel Holdsworth dropping his guitar pick and missing a note on the glockenspiel, but it certainly did not take anything away from the show. Instead the humble multi-instrumentalist happily laughed about it, joking that he hoped they had played ‘a whole new set of mistakes’ for the crowd on this occasion.
Joining Daniel was Tom Bamford who, despite only being part of the touring duo for 18 months, was absolutely up to the challenge of playing so many instruments to such a high standard in incredibly quick succession.
The pair’s ability to work so closely together is key to the show’s success and they did so brilliantly. They even incorporated humour, with Daniel sneaking a sip of beer at one point as Tom hurriedly performed his part.
The near-full Town Hall remained riveted throughout the concert, sat in absolute silence and stillness - with the exception of the odd tapping foot and occasional laugh - and a well-deserved standing ovation at the end certainly reflected the gig’s impact upon fans.
Tubular Bells For Two has been touring the globe for more than 10 years and it is clear to see why the show draws crowds time and time again.
A stand-out experience for music fans and a must-see for lovers of Tubular Bells.