Okay, I hold my hands up. I went to see Peter Andre thinking of him merely as the Mysterious Girl guy or Katie Price’s ex. I was expecting some cheesy pop, some awkward dad dancing, and not much else. I was not expecting screaming fans of all ages, and one of the more fun gigs I have been to in recent memory.
Celebrating the 25th anniversary of his first album, here Andre takes us through a tour of his (Wikipedia assured) surprisingly successful and long-lived career. Joined by a barebones backing band and three joyously talented supporting vocalists, Andre here proves himself to be a exuberantly solid, if not overly innovative, RnB talent. Hits such as Flava, Natural, and Behind Closed Doors got audience members on their feet in the traditionally stuffy Usher Hall, and there wasn’t a face sans smile in the place.
A surprising highlight, however, was a section of swing music right after the third costume change accompanied by cringey pre-recorded ‘live’ behind-the-scenes video. Playing the hits of Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra, as well as an amusingly reworked version of Mysterious Girl, Andre’s voice matches up to them surprisingly well, and the two-piece backing band more than makes up for the lack of an orchestra.
Of course the highlight is the finale of Mysterious Girl, and I admit I was enraptured by it, and haven’t had it out of my head since I left the venue. Rarely do you see an audience so excited by a single song, but here it felt justified. Essentially, one comes away from Peter Andre’s 25th anniversary tour forgetting about the reality shows, and romantic dramas, and remembering what he started as: a great pop and RnB act.