Meat Loaf at The O2 (Photos and Review)
Meat Loaf – Farewell Tour – O2 arena – Fri 17th May, 2013
Meat Loaf and his goth-rocking opera troupe swopped into town to give Ireland a final belting of “Bat out of Hell” super hits from his Farewell-tour last Friday, May 17th 2013. Adoring fans, cloaked in black, flocked along the banks of the river Liffey into the O2 arena. Die-hard followers better known as ‘Loafers’, some dressed from head-to-toe in goth-rock fashion, united for one last night along with young and old rockers who simply wished catch a final glimpse of the living legends performance.
A show of two halves, opening with no supporting act, no smoke, fireworks or expensive visuals – just 250 pounds of Meat Loaf looking the closest he has ever been to the grave, or hell. Emotional, warbling and shaking his way through lesser known material in part one, with long time power-ballad singer Patricia Russo, and band remained (or hid) in total darkness saving the day again and again. Breathing a sigh of relief, as part one drew to a close, Loafers cheered him on, but would they be as forgiving in part two?
Meat Loaf, born Marvin Lee Aday, began his legendary career on Broadway with hit shows: “Hair” and “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” before moving into rock music in the early 1970s. VHI has considered him to be one of the Top 100 rock artists of all time, he has 12 studio albums and the nugget “Bat out of Hell”, his greatest success and collaboration with songwriter Jim Steinman, still sells up to 200,000 albums year on year since its release back in the 1970s.
Blasting back onto the stage for part two – smoke, lights, action and a GIANT BEADY EYED BAT flew across stage. Loaf arrived on stage, like a new man Elvis-esque, in his sparkling suit with a twinkle in his eye. He crooned and thanked us“Without all of you, there would be no – me!”, continually crediting his success to songwriter Jim Steinman “I’ve never been so proud of any human in my whole life”.
Rejuvenated, he absolutely saved the day with the entire “Bat out of hell” album – stand out hits were “You Took The Words Right Out of My Mouth” and “Paradise by the Dashboard Light”. A background documentary about Meat Loaf and John Steinman was a great support. Reborn – he simply did his utmost to make up for lost time during part one – hit after hit. Describing how Jim Steinman came up with the hit “Two out of Three Aint Bad”, an emotional Russo and Meat Loaf gave it their all – as this would be one of the last times performing the hit.
A huge-finale: blow up dolls either feeling each other up or dancing around the band, the fake love story with Russo is like something from a ‘Carry on… Loafing’ film. After a fake exit, he returned to bash and warble out “And I Would Do Anything For Love”. Meat Loaf saving himself … took the words right out of my mouth.
Review by Áine Byrne
Photos by David Doyle