Bonnie Tyler at Electric Picnic: Total eclipse of a mass orgasm of nostalgia

Review: The tent fills with unconditional love for Bonnie Tyler and her trademark huskiness

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Bonnie Tyler playing on the Throwback stage at Electric Picnic. Photograph: Dave Meehan for The Irish Times

 

BONNIE TYLER ★★★

Electric Ireland Throwback stage

“Are you here for Bonnie?,” the woman sitting beside me enquires. “Who else would I be here for?,” I lie with a casual ‘where else would I be?’ laugh. For the first time in my life I am high-fived at a Bonnie Tyler gig.

There is an awful lot to be said for nostalgia, however, and how people connect with it. Yet the recognition factor of certain kinds of music seems to carry more carefree emotional weight than anything else, which is why there is more unconditional love here for Tyler than many other pop stars of her era. For decades, she has kept her bib clean, so to speak, and is the owner (the songwriter, Jim Steinman, notwithstanding) of the classic pop power ballad Total Eclipse of the Heart. It takes a while to get to this song; a preamble of cover versions, lesser hits (including It’s a Heartache), and showbiz stories pass the time.

When …Eclipse… arrives, however, there’s a massed legs akimbo, arm-waving nostalgia-based orgasm, with Tyler’s threateningly husky voice overthrown by thousands of people that are, unquestionably, here for Bonnie. High-fives all round.

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