The Wonderstuff are midway through Red Berry Joy Town and I swear that the years are dropping away.
If I closed my eyes I could imagine aged skin shedding and pooling around my feet. The beat of the music and the rapturous response from the crowd are aiding and abetting the transformation that is taking me back to a less stressful time and place. A more carefree existence.
One year drops away, then another five gone in the blink of an eye, ten years peel away and take the stress lines with them. Twenty years of paying bills, meeting the mortgage, having kids and raising them turns to dust in my minds eye.
If this is nostalgia then bring it on.
Miles Hunt from a distance doesn't even appear to have changed.
The slick short haired look that he has been sporting is gone and the curls are whipping about like it's the end of the eighties and not 2011. It's a visual reminder of the era that bolsters the music and helps with the out of time experience that is being had by all.
The band themselves look and sound great to.
Everything is clicking into place. It's a well oiled groove machine playing on the stage.
All around me people are beaming hundred watt smiles and shouting out the words that are imprinted in their memories.
The Wonderstuff always had a knack for writing witty pop classics that had a bit of a bite, and live is where they came into their own.
Every word, chord and bow stroke of the violin is a celebration of the moment and we're all being swept along on a wave of communal enjoyment with a glint in our eyes.
Legs that haven't danced in a decade are finding the beat to stomp along to. Voices that are probably more used to being raised in anger are joining in with choruses and everyone is lost in the moment.
This is what live music is about. Taking people and swaying emotions. It doesn't matter if it makes an individual happy or sad. The power is in making a connection with an audience and The Wonderstuff are connected.
Glittering pop gems in a crown of excellence come hard and fast. Breathlessly fast. One song storms into the next and no one is flagging. Second winds are found and exploited as we all roar out our satisfaction.
To my shame I have to say that in the last few years I've opted to go and see other bands when The Wonderstuff have rolled into town.
Never again though.
If they are playing I'm there. I want more of this. In fact give give give, me more more more perfectly sums it up, and I don't want to wait until the next world to get it.
I think most people will agree with me. A resounding success of a show. Sheer unadulterated magnificence.
In an age where it seems more common for people to write about music as if they are once removed from the enjoyment of it I've got to say fuck that.
If they can write about this show dispassionately then they are letting themselves and the reader down.
As a gig this was beyond criticism.
A fantastic nights entertainment from a band that I had forgotten were so good.