Having myself been on the end of her sharp wit at a previous gig, you have to say that if she wasn’t fronting Scottish rockers Texas, then Sharleen Spiteri would make a top stand-up comedian. In fact, before the band has even kicked off the first half of their show here at a sold-out Harrogate Convention Centre, Spiteri is joking about how they’re the support band for the headliners Texas.
Celebrating the 30th anniversary of their Southside debut album, the group is putting on a show of two halves for this tour. The first half sees the band playing a more intimate set where they perform the breakthrough debut in its entirety while the second is pure hits. With Spiteri and her bandmates taking to seats for a more chilled acoustic first half, each song from the album, from opener “I Don’t Want A Lover” to rockier numbers like “Thrill Has Gone” to “Future Is Promises,” kick-off this anniversary in fine fashion. Mix it up with Spiteri’s banter with the crowd getting a fair smattering of fans up out of their seats and this party is well and truly underway.
Having joked earlier in the night that their last visit to Harrogate during a snowstorm brought out about fifty fans, their long-awaited return to the Yorkshire town was a much rowdier affair. Laughing when one fan asked her what it was like to play to an audience much older than the band, this supposedly ageing fanbase have plenty of party in them as the band return for a fully electric, hit-filled set which they kick off with a roof-raising “Halo.”
It’s a stroll in the park for the Scottish rockers by this point and with the vocalist striding about the stage and singing along with fans who’ve joined her at the front, the band performs for another hour. It’s an hour packed with crowd favourites as the likes of “Say What You Want,” “I Don’t Want A Lover” and “Black Eyed Boy” lead into “Suspicious Mind” the finale of this wonderful two and half hours of one of the finest bands Scotland has produced.