In the week Kate Bush dethroned Harry Styles from his number one spot, the current 1980’s ‘Back to the Future’ vibe was reinforced by ‘Calling Planet Earth’ at Dorking Halls.
Calling Planet Earth is the show that defines a decade. For the uninitiated this may appear grandiose. But this New Romantic symphony is so much more than your average tribute act.
From the opening bars of Depeche Mode’s New Life, the audience knew it was in for a treat. The trio of talented performers: Michael King, Jay Ashton and local lass Lindsay Goodhand bounded on stage, looking as if they had teleported from 1981, wearing leather and lace and with 1980’s big hair with the obligatory hint of Sun in. Most tribute or covers band concentrate on one act, not several. It is testimony to their talent that it always felt like listening to the real thing, whether it be Phil Oakey or Simon Le Bon. (And more).
The audience; made up of 40-somethings who came of age during the electrifying ’80’s, with a good sprinkling of those who had been but a twinkle in the eye 40 years ago, were swept up by these vibrant, self-deprecating performers. And as The Human League morphed into ABC into Duran Duran into Spandau Ballet; any arthritic joints were soon forgotten as the entire auditorium jumped to their feet and strutted their funky stuff.
Calling Planet Earth captured the spirit of the original acts perfectly. There was palpable joy in the theatre as the audience danced and sang along to every word. With a huge ‘New Romantic’ back catalogue to draw from, it is safe to say that we will be Calling Planet Earth for some time to come.
Calling Planet Earth. Dorking Halls. 17th June