Europe – The Final Countdown 30th Anniversary Show – Live at the Roundhouse



Released on 11 August 2017 and reviewed by Angie K

It doesn’t seem that long ago when during those communist times, in Eastern Europe, while secretly listening to a Western radio chart on AM waves, I was struck by this catchy tune, ‘The Final Countdown’. Little did I know that it was about to become an iconic rock hit of all times, marking the start of a legendary career for a Swedish band that would become a worldwide phenomenon. The radio signal was far too crappy, so I couldn’t even work out the name of the band. It sounded like Yura. Well, it turned out their name was Europe. And it turns out this was 30 years ago!

The band is now celebrating their anniversary by sharing with us the experience of their unique performance from London’s Playhouse on 12th November last year. Joey Tempest announced this to have been one of the most memorable nights in the band’s career: “It was more enjoyable that we thought to revisit the whole Final Countdown album live!”

This limited edition has been released in a few different packages: DVD/2 CD, BluRay/2 CD, digital audio only, and a 12” boxset. It does feel special, which is reinforced by the message on the booklet where the band extends their gratitude to the fans for their continued support throughout the years.

While delivering exactly what should be expected from a special anniversary show, the band is killing two birds with one stone by also playing their latest album, War of Kings 2015, in its entirety. This is a slightly unusual for the occasion, but a rather clever move, taking into consideration the fact that some fans will have come to the show to honour the band’s history without necessarily having caught up with their more recent career.

This explains why the first part of the concert is not much different from a standard gig. The band, as always, doesn’t miss a beat, they sound as good as they always have, and Joey Tempest gives it all in his typical sexy but yet serious frontman style, never standing still for more than a couple of seconds. It doesn’t really feel like there is a special occasion that has filled Roundouse to the brink… Until the second part of the gig begins.

This is when the show explodes. Throughout the whole performance, monitors on stage show photos and slides from the band’s history, taking a long trip down Memory Lane. It feels emotional and exciting, and if there is a song you would want Europe to feature in this special show, it is guaranteed that they have done, as the idea of the night was to revisit the whole legendary multi-platinum Final Countdown. Listening to the CD will give you a vague idea of what atmosphere was like, but to feel it, you ought to be watching the DVD. This is when I caught myself glued to the TV and actually got to my feet, as if I were there: it is that real. The camera work is brilliant (the show is captured by Patric Ullaeus from rEvolver Film Company AB), with different techniques being used, and the lighting show is fantastic, as always. There is nothing else I would expect from such a landmark event’s audio/video package, and I wholeheartedly give it all stars.

Europe – Final Countdown 2017 DVDDisc 1:

  1. Hole In My Pocket
  2. The Second Day
  3. Praise You
  4. Nothing’ To Ya
  5. California 405
  6. Angels (With Broken Hearts)
  7. Days of Rock’n’Roll
  8. Children of the Mind
  9. Rainbow Bridge
  10. Vasastan
  11. Light It Up
  12. War of Kings

Disc 2:

  1. The Final Countdown
  2. Rock The Night
  3. Carrie
  4. Danger On The Track
  5. Ninja
  6. Cherokee
  7. Time Has Come
  8. Heart Of Stone
  9. On The Loose
  10. Love Chaser
  11. The Final Countdown (Reprise)