THERE'S always that niggling doubt when a band from your youth gets back together so many years after calling it a day.

Would they sound as good as they did back then?

Would the stage show live up to expectations?

Would the whole thing just end up tarnishing your rose-tinted memories?

Well, when perfectionist Jeff Lynne is involved and the band in question is ELO then surely those fears would be allayed.

Allayed they were within seconds of Standin' In The Rain as the 14-piece band hit the stage in front of five vertical projection screens stretching right across the rear and two enormous video screens flanking the stage and with a lighting rig that could illuminate a small city this made for one spectacular, visual experience.

So far so good. Even better however, was the music. With a crystal clear, perfectly balanced sound, ELO delivered big time. Jeff Lynne's vocals were faultless, the harmonies delightful and the music delivered by a band, including original keyboardist Richard Tandy, at the absolute top of their game. Lynne himself, in understated fashion, barely moved from his spot but then when the music is so expressive and flamboyant, he just let the music do the talking.

With a catalogue as expansive as ELO's, jam packed full of hits, every song seemed like a statement piece from Evil Woman, where the rear projections and light show really came into its own, to the glorious Sweet inspired harmonies of Do Ya and the soaring melodies of All Over The World, every song was greeted like an old friend.

ELO were always at odds with the musical trends of the time, never really fitting in with the prevailing Punk, Metal, Ska, New Wave fashions but seemingly appealing to all and sundry and when the opening chords of Wild West Hero, produced an audible wistful sigh of delight, you could see the connection that ELO made with their music. It just crossed the musical divide in a way most other bands couldn't.

Shine A Little Love with its exuberant Disco beat and dazzling laser show had the whole Arena up dancing while Don't Bring Me Down brought some harder Rock to the night but it was the absolute iconic Mr Blue Sky that really hit home the delights of ELO`s music with their very own mini Rock Opera, made all the more spectacular by some stunning harmonies.

Chuck Berry's Roll Over Beethoven was such an apt choice to end the show, it's rock 'n' roll bravado perfectly captured the party atmosphere of the night. It may well have been a night of nostalgia for many but done so well that if you`d closed your eyes it could have been 1978 all over again and that's no bad thing. An absolutely faultless evening.

Mick Burgess