Daryl Hall and John Oates performing their Real Deal Tour at The Resorts World Arena Birmingham on Wednesday 24th April 2019

Images and review by Kevin Cooper

Daryl Hall and John Oates’ career started in the early 70s but few acts embodied the 80s like they did and last night they took this eager crowd at the Resorts World Arena on a nostalgic trip down memory lane.

Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014, they set the tone for the evening with their biggest hit of all, Maneater which went down well with this lively and devoted crowd. With the energy of musicians half their age, Hall still sports his long hair and leather biker jacket, whilst Oates clings to his curly hair and trademark moustache.

Backed by a very tight band, which was led by guitarist Shane Theriot who impressed in particular, with tremendous solos and phenomenal skill, and included saxophonist Charles DeChant, who has been with Hall and Oates since 1976, and who was absolutely outstanding, breathing life into every number on which he played especially on the likes of Family Man and Method Of Modern Love.

For the classic Out Of Touch, the crowd were encouraged to wave their arms in the air, and most duly obliged, as the sublimely catchy song survived some unseemly guitar duelling. Some of the tried and tested arrangements were changed such as on Say It Isn’t So and It’s A Laugh to accommodate the amazing musicians, with the array of stunning backdrops which created an excellent setting for each song.

They also treated the crowd to a beautiful cover of The Righteous Brother’s You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’ on which the duo delivered enchanting harmonious vocals. Hall’s voice is slightly rougher than it was, but he was still able to make the high notes as the pair exchanged minimal banter and knowing glances of men who have spent over fifty years in the music industry together.

Included on the set list was 1973’s She’s Gone and the obscure 1975 gem, Is It A Star which allowed Hall and Oates to each shine in their own right, with Hall providing the higher vocal notes as he played guitar, keyboards and piano, whilst Oates sang with a luscious, lower tone as he performed on guitar.

With main set closer, the extended I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do) getting everyone on their feet, they brought the evening to an end with a dazzling Rich Girl and Kiss On My List, whilst Private Eyes had everyone singing along. Set closer, You Make My Dreams took the crowd to music heaven as the evening came to an end all too soon.