Spandau Ballet, The O2, Dublin

In the drab Britain of 30 years ago, Spandau Ballet stuck out like a sore thumb and kick-started the 1980s with appearances at non-rock venues which were as much fashion shows as harbingers of the pop music of the future. Images and memories of being mobbed with the band in Edinburgh in 1982 flashed through my mind, as they do on the film montage which introduces their first gig in two decades. The audience tonight is at least 70 per cent female, though the merchandisers also cleverly target the thirtysomething couples with romper suits adorned with Spandau motifs. It's all a far cry from the heady days of the Blitz, the Soho venue where it all began for the group who put the style back into pop. Fittingly, they start with the synth-driven "To Cut A Long Story Short" and the irresistible walking bass line of "The Freeze", their first two singles, even if they don't revert to their kilt and frilly-shirt selves of 1980.

First Night: Spandau Ballet, O2, Dublin

I know this much is true – they've still got it

How We Met: Gary Kemp & Robert Elms

'Our current obsession is cycling. But in the past it might have been existentialism or tailoring'

Pandora: Labour promises an 'A-list' conference act

The Conservatives are to offer more energetic party members the opportunity to rave on to early-Nineties club sensation Angie Brown (last year's star, Tony Hadley, was, we're told, "too busy with Spandau Ballet" to make a second appearance), while the Lib Dems decided not to book anyone – but what of Labour's plans for their conference entertainment?

Katy Guest: Nostalgia is the coming thing

The one thing that will symbolise our retro-fest era is band reunions

ABC, Royal Albert Hall, London<br/>The Prodigy, Cardiff International Arena, Cardiff

Martin Fry's 1982 tale of heartbreak is performed in its entirety &ndash; and has lost none of its power

One-click Wonder: Forgettable reunions

Eighties popsters Spandau Ballet have confirmed they’re putting differences aside to embark on a comeback world tour. With the whiff of cash-strapped desperation in the air, here we recall some other dodgy musical reunions...

Fashion: Back to the Blitz spirit

Fashion's whimsy regularly requires wearers to stockpile like a chameleon, to blend in with the ever-changing milieu of what's hot and what's not. But right now, fashion has gone one step further: think like a karma chameleon, dig out your Culture Club clobber and get ready to party like it's 1979.

Alan Hubbard: Woodward promises no more Eddie the Eagles in Britain's new ice age

Inside Lines: There is no doubt Woodward will be the key backroom figure in Vancouver

Spandau Ballet - To cut a long story short...

Amazing what beer can do. Tony Hadley of Spandau Ballet describes how the rifts were healed and the band got ready to tour again

Story of the Song - Spandau Ballet, True (1983)

Gary Kemp had long desired to emulate the Motown greats.

Janet Street-Porter: We've lost sight of what bravery really means

Is "brave" the most over-used word in the English language? Jade Goody receives the same kind of gushing tributes that surrounded the death of Princess Diana. Then, psychologist Oliver James was roundly condemned for daring to voice the opinion that the nation was succumbing to a kind of collective hysteria (and not true mourning) about a woman people felt they knew, even though they'd never met or spoken to her.

It's true! Spandau Ballet are back

The new romantic pioneers have re-formed, despite one of the most vicious feuds in pop. Mark Hughes reports

Hospices where Ivan's legacy lives on

The Camerons make appeal for carers and charities that helped their eldest child
Latest stories from i100
SPONSORED FEATURES
Career Services

Day In a Page

A
Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... for the fourth time

Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... again

I was once told that intelligence services declare their enemies dead to provoke them into popping up their heads and revealing their location, says Robert Fisk
Margaret Attwood on climate change: 'Time is running out for our fragile, Goldilocks planet'

Margaret Attwood on climate change

The author looks back on what she wrote about oil in 2009, and reflects on how the conversation has changed in a mere six years
New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered: What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week

New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered

What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week
Oculus Rift and the lonely cartoon hedgehog who could become the first ever virtual reality movie star

The cartoon hedgehog leading the way into a whole new reality

Virtual reality is the 'next chapter' of entertainment. Tim Walker gives it a try
Ants have unique ability to switch between individual and collective action, says study

Secrets of ants' teamwork revealed

The insects have an almost unique ability to switch between individual and collective action
Donovan interview: The singer is releasing a greatest hits album to mark his 50th year in folk

Donovan marks his 50th year in folk

The singer tells Nick Duerden about receiving death threats, why the world is 'mentally ill', and how he can write a song about anything, from ecology to crumpets
Let's Race simulator: Ultra-realistic technology recreates thrill of the Formula One circuit

Simulator recreates thrill of F1 circuit

Rory Buckeridge gets behind the wheel and explains how it works
Twitter accused of 'Facebookisation' over plans to overhaul reverse-chronological timeline

Twitter accused of 'Facebookisation'

Facebook exasperates its users by deciding which posts they can and can’t see. So why has Twitter announced plans to do the same?
Jane Birkin asks Hermès to rename bag - but what else could the fashion house call it?

Jane Birkin asks Hermès to rename bag

The star was shocked by a Peta investigation into the exotic skins trade
10 best waterproof mascaras

Whatever the weather: 10 best waterproof mascaras

We found lash-enhancing beauties that won’t budge no matter what you throw at them
Diego Costa biography: Chelsea striker's route to the top - from those who shared his journey

Diego Costa: I go to war. You come with me...

Chelsea's rampaging striker had to fight his way from a poor city in Brazil to life at the top of the Premier League. A new book speaks to those who shared his journey
Ashes 2015: England show the mettle to strike back hard in third Test

England show the mettle to strike back hard in third Test

The biggest problem facing them in Birmingham was the recovery of the zeitgeist that drained so quickly under the weight of Australian runs at Lord's, says Kevin Garside
Women's Open 2015: Charley Hull - 'I know I'm a good golfer but I'm also just a person'

Charley Hull: 'I know I'm a good golfer but I'm also just a person'

British teen keeps her feet on ground ahead of Women's Open
Turkey's conflict with Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq can benefit Isis in Syria

Turkey's conflict with Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq can benefit Isis in Syria

Turkish President Erdogan could benefit politically from the targeting of the PKK, says Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn or a return to a Labour government

Our choice is years of Tory rule under Corbyn or a return to a Labour government

Yvette Cooper urged Labour members to 'get serious' about the next general election rather than become 'a protest movement'