It was a long time coming - over forty years - but New York's Blue Öyster Cult dazzled in Dublin on Thursday night (28th July 2016), playing to a capacity crowd on their first ever Irish date. Performing the whole of their classic 1976 album 'Agents Of Fortune', the lauded outfit did not disappoint, with attendees treated to an extended performance that clocked in at over two and a half hours.
The good-natured heckle that greeted the band as they casually strode onto the stage said it all; "what took you so f*****g long?", teased one punter as Eric Bloom, Donald 'Buck Dharma' Roeser and band arrived to delighted applause.
Acknowledging their absence, Bloom greeted the audience saying: "Hello everybody, we're very glad to be here in Ireland for the first time", before introducing the first set - a complete live rendering of their most celebrated release by simply adding: "Ladies and gentlemen, 'Agents of Fortune'.
Playing the album set in its original running order, it was an airing of the third song - the immortal '(Don't Fear) The Reaper' that predictably raised the roof in the Dublin club. For many bands, playing their greatest hit so early on might have set the rest of the night on a downward trajectory, but not so for the legendary outfit.
Joined on guitar and lead vocals by former member Albert Bouchard, the expanded six-piece blasted through an incendiary 'The Revenge of Vera Gemini' followed by a devilish 'Sinful Love', to the delight of the crowd. Bursting with excitement, the one-time BÖC drummer - who was brandishing a Gibson SG suitably adorned with the 'Agents Of Fortune' artwork gushed; "I am so happy to be here. You have no idea".
Going on to play three separate sets - 'Agents Of Fortune', a run through their greatest hits, plus an extended encore, with a two and a half hour show, many agreed that the band's long absence from Ireland had been worth the wait.
Dedicating the show to late crew member Sam Judd, it was a night of both celebration, and remembrance for the band who seemed to enjoy the show as much as the audience.
Blue Öyster Cult's short European run continues on Friday (29th July), where the band play 'Agents Of Fortune' in London at The Forum. The tour then continues with shows in Germany and Switzerland before the end of the month. For a full list of dates visit the official Blue Öyster Cult website.
Check out our shots from the Dublin show below. All photos by Olga Kuzmenko.