The Bootleg Beatles @ the NIA, Birmingham

Having been a lifelong Beatles fan but a noughties child, therefore missing any opportunity to see the fab four live, the Bootlegs seemed the next viable choice. And baby, they were damn good.

They provided the full experience: they had John Lennon’s quirky humour, George’s charisma, Paul’s fumbling way of talking, and Ringo’s nasally tones down to an art form. In short, the Bootlegs provided us with a way of accessing the 1960s hysteria that surrounded one of the most ground-breaking groups of all time. Add into this their astounding musical talents, the use of a mesmerising orchestra (I’m thinking particularly of a musical interlude in which the orchestra played ‘The Long and Winding Road’) and the sounds and sights of the sixties, and it was a concert to remember. 

The Beatle boys played all the massive hits, mixed in with some of the lesser known songs in order to appeal to the popular and the die-hard fans. The boys themselves were brilliant: they were quirky and funny, with comments from ‘Well you can take pictures, but digital cameras haven’t been invented yet’ to a promised prize for the best dancer of ‘a small Japanese lady in a bag – take her, please!’.

Without raving on, this is an experience that every Beatles fan can enjoy: the Bootleg’s have absolutely nailed the mannerisms, songs and overall knowledge of the Beatles, and put this to a fantastic use in taking you back to the era of peace and love, man.



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