My love of Westlife

RETURN After their last concert in Malaysia in 2019, veteran pop group Westlife made a welcome comeback by taking us back in time with all their best hits.

Westlife was founded in 1998 by Shane Filan, Mark Feehily, Kian Egan, Nicky Byrne and Brian McFadden. They quickly made an impression with their debut single Swear It Again. McFadden eventually left the group in 2004.

The recent Westlife tour is named after the group’s latest studio album, Wild Dreams. The two-day concert, organized by Trumpet International, took place on February 23-24 at 8:30 p.m. at Axiata Arena in Bukit Jalil, Kuala Lumpur.

On the 23rd I joined a crowd of more than 8,000 fans and had one of the happiest days of my life. Excited fans filled the stadium to see the Irish boy band play live. There were loud and clear screams and cheers. A young and talented Malaysian singer named Daniel Chuer gave the show’s opening performance, singing Whitney Houstand’s I Have Nothing and Erni Zakri’s Ku Bersuara.

The guys came out in black and white outfits and started their performance with Starlight, a song from their 2021 album, exactly five minutes after Daniel thanked the audience and left the stage. They waved excitedly to the crowd and then sang Uptown Girl by Billy Joel and When You’re Looking Like That.

Callously, he broke his vocals to say, “Sing with us.” The audience was on their feet as the boys performed Fool Again and If I Let You Go, and they sang along in a nearly flawless pitch that wowed the band . They expressed their gratitude to the crowd for their support over the past 23 years, in response to a banner that read, “I’ve loved you since 1999.”

“Thank you Malaysia, you guys made us feel at home,” they said.

Then they started singing My Love. Well that was the song that was my introduction to Westlife. Words cannot describe how moved I was to see Westlife sing the songs I jammed to as a little girl.

The guys really appreciated that us fans filled the arena with our singing during this song which received the loudest applause. The boys were hooked, almost literally. They gave their best on every song.

Next they played their first hit, Swear It Again. Of course, the passionate enthusiasm of the audience helped to elevate the performance even further.

They left the stage briefly and then reappeared in matching silver vests. The band also played a medley of ABBA tunes including Mamma Mia, Take a Chance on Me, I Have a Dream, Dancing Queen and Thank You for the Music to everyone’s delight. Feehily sang particularly well, hitting the high notes with ease.

The fans seemed to be having the time of their lives. And it wasn’t just her; The guys also moved from side to side on stage and even performed basic choreography. They never seemed to get tired. Her excitement lasted the whole time.

They returned to the stage after a colorful outfit change and delighted the audience even more by singing a cover of Barry Manilow’s well-known hit Mandy and changing the word “Mandy” to “Malaysia” in the lyrics.

Other popular songs followed, such as I Lay My Love On You and Seasons in the Sun.

The highlight of the evening was her performance of World of Our Own. The members performed a short catwalk to excellent rhythms that made the audience go nuts.

After another wardrobe change, the mood took a sentimental turn with Flying Without Wings, Hello My Love and their closing song, You Lift Me Up.

Many of the fans were visibly moved and held their hands in the air while enjoying the song.

During the show, the band members also cracked several humorous jokes. Everyone could be heard screaming their hearts out as Byrne called out to the crowd, “Westlife! Westleben!” Then he made a joke and said: “We are too old, I feel that the energy is fading.”

The members also had some lovely moments interacting with fans while holding flashlights and explaining that they needed them for their social media accounts and that they were doing the same in every other country.

They had a great set list and kept the crowd amused throughout. It was great to be around hundreds of people who had a great passion for their music.

The powerful vibes that dominated the whole concert were simply amazing as they synchronized their singing with their dancing. I have to say that the LED screen, lighting and audio quality were also excellent.

In fact, these aspects increased the energy of the show and of course the audience’s ability to turn the concert into a karaoke session was truly amazing. I enjoyed every minute of it. A true dream come true, that! My love of Westlife

Caroline Bleakley

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