If Pokemon, snap bracelets, Power Rangers and dial-up internet defined pop culture in the ‘90s, dance music was the soundtrack of the era. And the hits came from everywhere, not just the US.
Seven groups who thrived in that time tried to revive the magic on Friday night at Live on the Lake at the Irish Village in Dubai.
The show started early at a little past 4pm with Liberty X, the British-Irish girl group, now reduced to just three members from five. They were followed by the British band Urban Cookie Collective before Italian house music band Black Box came and really started the party.
The group, known for their Milli Vanilli-style lip-synching controversy in the ‘90s, is now fronted by the amazing Celestine Walcott-Gordon, who joined them in 2013. She effortlessly took fans through some of their biggest hits including Everybody, Everybody, Strike It Up and Ride on Time.
Corona, the group fronted by Brazilian singer Olga Souza, was next. Time did not seem to have affected Souza’s vocals, who, at one point, did an almost flawless rendition of Whitney Houston’s I Will Always Love You. But the highlight of her performance — and the night — was when she came down to the crowd during a performance of Rhythm of the Night, one of there group’s biggest global hits.
Belgian dance duo 2 Unlimited were next. While the young Kim Vergouwen brought all the enthusiasm, she was no match to Anita Doth, who originally sang the group’s biggest hits. Doth left in 2016 to pursue a solo career. Originally member Ray Slijngaard did his best to create the 2 Unlimited magic, running through eight hits including Tribal Dance, No Limit and Twilight Zone.
Another group that was a shadow of their past was the English pop group S Club 3, previously S Club 7. Known for their simple lyrics and dance-worthy beats, original members Jo O’Meara, Bradley McIntosh and Tina Barrett did bring the ‘S Club Party’ for fans, and also performed hits Don’t Stop Movin’ and the sing along-worthy Reach.
The night closed with Irish girl band B*witched. With member Sinead O’Carroll calling in sick, it was up to Edele Lynch and Lindsay Armaou to get the party up to speed. But by the time it all ended, it looked like time, and a few beverages, had taken a toll of many of the fans.