Bryan Adams delights Newcastle’s Utilita Arena with easy-going arena rock classics

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Bryan Adams brought his arena rock classics to Newcastle for a heavy-set showcase of classic tracks and new melodies

Arena rock legend Bryan Adams took his iconic tracks and new album tour to Newcastle’s Utilita Arena for a blast of past classics and moving modern melodies.

The 62-year-old singer offered up a stacked setlist, asking the audience for requests and mixed in newer tracks with classic hits Summer of ‘69 and 18 ‘til I Die.

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Adams and his backing band were on top form for the concert, which offered a thoroughly comfortable atmosphere with its laid-back, easy-listening style.

His voice is just as strong as his earliest records would boast, and the lack of change in quality from the early days of Reckless to latest release So Happy it Hurts is comforting.

But stealing the show was guitarist Keith Scott, with some incredible guitar solos that dominated the early show.

That is always the risk Adams’ music runs, the singer at the heart of some very easy, agreeable messages can be outshined by the talents that surround him.

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It happened at the Utilita Arena show, with Scott hammering home some of the best dad rock tracks, elevating them to new heights with keen riffs on When You’re Gone marking a show highlight.

Bryan Adams’ show featured all the classics and a few hidden gems of his back catalogueBryan Adams’ show featured all the classics and a few hidden gems of his back catalogue
Bryan Adams’ show featured all the classics and a few hidden gems of his back catalogue | Ewan Gleadow

But it was never going to surpass that one track. The one everyone knows from their days at house parties or pub jukeboxes.

Adams’ music lends itself to that easy-listening genre, and it is no surprise that a show featuring back-to-back renditions of Rebel, 18 til I Die and infamous hit Summer of ‘69 captured that homely feel.

Keen on interacting with his audience and engaging them in all the usual frontman ways, giving verses over to the crowd, turning the microphone on them, there was a real spirited sense from the Shine a Light singer in his return to Newcastle.

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A hefty 28-track setlist barely scratched the surface of Adams’ light and listenable back catalogue, yet crowd requests and ill-forgotten tracks that Adams holds near and dear to his heart made for a solid showcase at the Utilita Arena.

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