The Orchestra prove a big hit

Standin' In the Rain wasn't Electric Light Orchestra's greatest hit, but it was one of many which went down a storm at the Regent.

The Orchestra

Ipswich Regent

Wednesday night

Standin' In the Rain wasn't Electric Light Orchestra's greatest hit, but it was one of many which went down a storm at the Regent.

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The Orchestra did the original of the track - dating back to 1977 - proud. This stunning piece of music was set to a backdrop of flashing lightning, and became a spectacle which will stay in the memories of many who were there.

The current UK tour comes off the back of the huge success of 'The Very Best Of Electric Light Orchestra - All Over The World' that reached number 4 in the UK album charts in 2006.

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Three of ELO's former members led the way with Kelly Groucutt on bass and vocals, Louis Clark on keyboards and Mik Kaminski manning his trademark blue violin.

With the harmonising vocal talents of Eric Troyer and Phil Bates to draw on, plus drummer Gordon Townsend, The Orchestra was able to replicate the layered ELO sound with precision.

Without the unique talents of former front man Jeff Lynne, this show could have fallen flat on its face. ELO was famed for its innovative production techniques, and Clark's orchestration and Kaminski's skill are still very much at the fore.

Plus The Orchestra also shared the vocals around, and when Bates took the lead it really could have been the ELO of old.

They kept up the pace for over two hours, delivering hit after hit including Mr Blue Sky, Evil Woman and Shine a Little Love. They even provided their own 'support act' - ie themselves - after the interval.

With Clark, Groucutt and Kaminski in the band, The Orchestra were always likely to focus on the hits from ELO's golden era of the mid to late 70s, before Lynne took the band in a more electronic direction. This was good news for the hundreds of fans who turned out, including one chap who was determined to put on his own dance show at Kelly's feet.

"Some songs you'll know, some songs we'll know, and one song nobody will know - including us!" laughed Kelly. They then played a Bulgarian folk song recreated from a clip which Kaminski found on the Internet - and praised themselves for carrying it off, after learning it throughout the tour.

ELO's music was often compared to that of The Beatles, and a homage to the Fab Four appeared in the form of a radical reworking of Twist and Shout, and Getting Better. The crowd was also treated to other highlights including Roll Over Beethoven, Telephone Line, Livin' Thing, Wild West Hero, Sweet Talkin' Woman and Hold On Tight. The audience joined in the encore by singing Don't Bring Me Down, along with their musical idols.

Seeing the old rockers at work, only served to flag up what their enduring influence has been, on recent hits like Take That's Shine, and chartbusters by The Feeling.


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