A chilly night at Dalhalla
RÄTTVIK - The tour goes into its second week and Per with band showed up in remote Rättvik at the amazing venue Dalhalla. It wasn't sold out as far as I know, but at least 3,800 were there, the last time I checked.
Dalhalla (no English) is in short a quarry turned into a concert venue with amazing acoustics. Roxette played there in 2015. Sting has the attendance record of 6,000. So how was En vacker kväll? It was cold, 11° C and windy. Rain from time to time, but stopped before the concert started. Apart from that it was not bad at all. Per seemed to be in good spirits, as per always. No technical hiccups that I could notice, and even the show itself seemed more spontaneous than normal. Now, I’m not saying it was, but it looked good. Per et. al played the same set list as last week, with one exception – they traded “Tittar på dej när du dansar” for “Listen to Your Heart”, the old Roxette chestnut. While I liked LTYH, let me tell you Per, it doesn’t hurt to play them both! Per presented the song with “Here’s something we rehearsed during soundcheck…” which they actually did according to the people who heard it. Speaking of people, it seems Rättvik is too remote for the fans to show up. There were around 4-6 “front row maniacs” there, and of course they had a great time, but they were sort of few. And the whole standing area, which wasn’t big by any means, was never crowded.
The set list:
1. Min plats
2. På promenad genom stan
3. Vilket håll du än går
4. Juni, juli, augusti
5. Det hjärta som brinner
6. Segla på ett moln/Första pris
7. It Must Have Been Love
8. Listen to Your Heart
9. Honung och guld
10. Här kommer alla känslorna (på en och samma gång)/Flickan i en Cole Porter-sång
11. Kung av sand
12. Ljudet av ett annat hjärta
14. Gå & fiska!
15. The Look (with a frantic “När vi två blir en” as intro)
16. Varmt igen
17. Tycker om när du tar på mej
18. Dressed for Success
Talking to Åsa Gessle I learned that Dalhalla has some sort of subscription, you rent your chair for the season and show up for what you want to see. I don’t know if that’s how it is, but if so it explains a lot of the very mature (to be nice) audience! They came with their RVs (I counted over 60 of them) and wobbled to the concert. The audience seemed to enjoy it fully though.
So, about the concert: it starts off slowly, and kind of mellow. The first three songs, while nice, are in my taste too slow to start with. When “Juni, juli, augusti” and “Det hjärta som brinner” kicked in the audience woke up, but immediately after, the ballads came back and dampened the mood again. It wasn’t really until “Ljudet av ett annat hjärta” it took off for real. Those four fast numbers in a row killed it, and they all sounded really swell. Of course Per told the audience he’d found the band members on an online dating site again, and that he must have had a lucky night. When introducing Magnus he asked if he was OK. Magnus stated he was and that he’d been really tired all day, but felt better now. Both Per and Magnus agreed that it was better than the other way around… and Per thought it was great having Magnus there.
It wouldn’t be Per Gessle if the ballads didn’t come back. This late in the set though, they work better. Both “Tycker om när du tar på mej” and “Varmt igen” (not in that order) were excellent. Helena’s voice is like cotton candy. I cannot for the life of me understand how she can sound so marvellous. There were some boos when she sang, and that’s very mean spirited of the “fans”. I know, they think she’s stealing Marie’s thunder, but A: she’s not, she’s just being herself and B: should Per never play these songs ever again because of Marie’s condition? I think not. Grow up, please.
The concert ends as usual with “Sommartider” and man, does Andreas bang those drums hard enough? It was like he was mining for limestone! Speaking of banging, in one of the songs, possibly “Joyride” he was so into banging his drums that he lost a drumstick and almost impaled poor Åsa who was videoing the performance!
Finally they performed “Småstadsprat” with wonderful Helena as Lasse.
All in all a pretty decent evening! If the Swedish summer would ever arrive, this would be its perfect companion. (And maybe some rosé…)