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JUNE 8 2002
A-HA @ ULLEVÅLL STADION, OSLO

A-ha kicked off their world tour last night at the Ullevåll soccer arena in Oslo and... they scored!


DANIEL BARRADAS


WITH FRIENDS: a-ha and 23.000 fans at Ullevåll Stadium last night (Photo: Thomas Olsen)

This time the band turned their opening tour concert into a mini scandinavian music festival featuring the artists Saybia (DK), Sondre Lerche (N), Big Bang (N), A Camp (Nina Persson of The Cardigans' solo project) (S).

But in spite of the charming Lerche and the energy of Big Bang, the "afternoon high" event was actually low spirited, since everybody was there only to see a-ha and none of those acts are really fit for football stadium size. It was quite noticable the crowd's excitment after the circus performance that ended the long afternoon waiting and only when a-ha entered the stage were the spirits indeed high.

In spite of the weakness of this album compared with older material, the new songs acctually worked very well as opening and when the new hit "Forever not yours" came the audience had allready surrendered.

What followed was to be a display of energy that shows that the boys still got it and that moments of perfect pop like "the sun allways shine on tv" and "take on me" haven't aged a bit, just as it seems to be the case with Morten Harket's looks.

This tour is also fresher than the previous one in the colours, ambience and in the right balance between new and old material. The animated picture pannels designed by Magne Furholmen himself that set the background are sober and effective at the same time that they frame the concert perfectly.

Anneli Drecker's presence is unfortunatly very discreet and one can't help wonder if her presence ir really needed there. She does back vocals in moast of the songs, but only in "Stay on these roads" does it really add something extra to it. She only came forward once to share the spotlight with Harket in precisely «Turn the Lights Down», but the moment somehow lost the "special guest appeal" it had on the previous tour.

The special guest this time was the young Sondre Lerche that stepped to the stage to sing a beautiful version of "Locust" with the band that made him want to be a star himself. One could notice his nervousness, but like in his own set earlier in the afternoon he charmed the audience effortlessly.

All in all, a concert with no surprises... but who needs them?! It's simply delicious to see a-ha in such excelent form. The machine is oiled and working well and after the surrender of the 23.000 spectators in Oslo the rest of world will soon follow.

REVIEW: SPOT.NO
Fargesprakende nostalgi med a-ha: Hvorfor forandre på et vinnende konsept? a-ha leverte ett show etter lest fra forrige gang, men oppgradert og forbedret til et mer vitalt, fargesprakende og pulserende show ...

REVIEW: DAGBLADET
Klar hjemmesier!: Publikum var allerede i gang med bølgen da den første a-ha-låta, «Afternoon High», strømmet ut av lydanlegget på Ullevaal Stadion ved ni-tida i går kveld...

REVIEW: AFTENPOSTEN
Beckhamtakter over aha på Ullevaal:
Morten Harket og aha entrer Ullevaal stadion. På vår nasjonale fotballarena brøler vel 23000 tilhengere like unisont begeistret som britene gjorde da David Bechham scoret Englands mål mot Argentina...

REVIEW: DAGSAVISEN
Lang dags ferd mot a-ha: Etter en forsiktig førsteomgang vant a-ha på overtid på Ullevaal Stadion i går. Men ventetiden var lang og lite engasjerende.I går skulle det bli a-has store dag. Ikke bare spilte de for over 23.000 mennesker, det største publikumsantallet siden...

REVIEW: NETTAVISEN
A-has store folkefest: Trondheim hadde kanskje Ari og Märtha, men Oslo har a-ha. Lørdag skapte a-ha folkefest av de sjeldne på Ullevaal Stadion. Som takk fikk de den beste turnéåpningen de kunne tenke seg...

REVIEW: VG
Sliteseier: a-ha kjempet tungt for å dra i land hjemmeseieren da Ullevaal stadion i går kveld ble tatt i bruk som landslagsarena også for popmusikk. Det sier seg selv at nervene ligger tjukt utenpå både band og støtteapparat når man velger en turnépremière på et stadion hvor ingen vet hvor lyden hopper...

SETLIST:

01. Afternoon High
02. The Sun Never Shone That Day
03. You Wanted More
04. Forever Not Yours
05. Manhatten Skyline
06. I’ve Been Loosing You
07. Time And Again
08. Did Anyone Approach You?
09. Turn The Lights Down
10. Stay On Theese Roads
11. Hunting High And Low
12. Locust
13. Minor Earth Major Sky
14. Scoundrel Days
15. The Living Daylights
16. The Sun Always Shines On TV
17. Lifelines
18. Summer Moved On
19. Take On Me

 

PHOTOS
by THOMAS OLSEN