31 years ago I was at Leeds City Hall watching A-HA for the first time on their ‘Stay on these roads’ tour.
Been to see them a few times after that and never been disappointed.

Tonight they are at Leeds Arena to a much bigger crowd. So against the opinions of a lot of people my age, their fanbase has actually grown in the UK………but i knew this anyway.

0B3A5644-2882-2889After a short but impressive film containing video clips from ‘train of thought’, A-HA took to the stage with a mighty cheer from the crowd. Not the teenie scream from 31 years ago but loud enough. They played the ‘Hunting, high and low’ album from start to finish. A few songs I had never heard played live. Opening with ‘Take on me’ was strange but unavoidable.0B3A5717-2896-2897

Over the years, A-HA have always had impressive visuals associated with them, from videos and programmes.0B3A5836-2885-2886

The song from the album that stood out to me was the last one ‘Here I stand and face the rain’. The timelapse storm videos accompanying it were impressive, never heard this song played so well and made the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end.
They played the demo version of ‘Dream myself alive’ but I disagree with Mags, the album version is much better but a great bassline.0B3A5863-2893-2894

After the interval, they started with a tune i’d lost to old age…….Analogue. I remember buying the 7 inch picture disc :-).
From there on they played pretty much all my favourite tunes…..Swing of things, I’ve been losing you, Stay on these roads. They also played a new tune called ‘Digital River’ which was quite catchy.0B3A5770-2895-2898
After a short wait, they gave us two absolute diamonds in the encore….
.Scoundrel Days and The Living Daylights.0B3A5957-2890-2892

To say my night started in massive disappointment by me being put at the sound desk to shoot photos this was one of my epic gigs of the year. I wanted epic pics for epic gig, not to be.0B3A5660-2884-2887

A-ha were one of my photographic influences when i was a kid, especially the Scoundrel Days album, with the photos from Just Loomis……..Legend.

5th time I’ve seen them, they get better with age.


Philip Goddard

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