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Arts Diary: SUMMER POPS Bootleg Beatles, Central Docks.

Byline: PETER GRANT

THEY'RE back . . . The Fab Four, that is, in all their former glories - thanks to a band we've known for all these years.

The Bootleg Beatles have been around longer than the actual Moptops.

It's like TV's Dad's Army - a series that lasted twice as long as the war.

But to keep going you have to change the repertoire. This troupe, with more than 4,000performances under their belt since they started in the early 80s, have undergone many lineups, but each outfit tackles the subject matter with love and affection.

This is the concert The Beatles never gave, spanning eight years of classic Lennon/McCartney and Harrison material with a few Ringo solos in there.

They don't give the game away, and refer to each other as John, Paul, George and Ringo. Suffice to say their alter egos D. N, A and H portraying them are happy with that illusion.

Kicking off with I Wanna Hold Your Hand they move gracefully through such early hits as All My Loving and She Loves You.

They return after an on-stage string quartet performs Yesterday.

Then it's re-workings of songs from Revolver including Eleanor Rigby and Taxman. And then love songs Strawberry Fields Forever and Penny Lane aided by Annette Brown's beautiful solo in the latter.

It just gets better all the time as the Fabs might have said and it did with an after-interval tribute to Sgt Pepper with Day in The Life and the single All You Need is Love. And then the Abbey Road standards Come Together, Something and Golden Slumbers. It all builds neatly, layerupon-layer, to a wonderful finale taking in Hey Jude and Twist and Shout.

Concert-wise it is hard to develop and re-invent a concept tribute show, but The Bootlegs do it year in and year out. At the Summer Pops they excelled themselves yet again.

Thumbs up all round. Gear, fab , indeed
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Jul 6, 2005
Words:319
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