East 17 in Dubai

'90s boyband minus Brian Harvey at McGettigan's

We admit feeling a little bemused when we found out that multi-million-selling ’90s boy band East 17 were coming to Dubai to play a Christmas-themed gig in an Irish pub, while Take That, the band’s arch nemesis of their heyday, enjoy sold-out stadium tours.

In fairness, at this stage the Walthamstow lads have squabbled, split up and reformed so many times you’d be forgiven for not realising they’re still a fully functioning group. Well, this reincarnation, lead by principle songwriter Tony Mortimer, is about three-quarters functioning – lead singer Brian Harvey (the one who made some unwise boasts to the tabloids) is still strangely absent.

With their rap rhymes and faux-streetwise get-up, East 17 were always (marginally) cooler than Gary, Robbie and co. Expect a night of nostalgic cheese from their catalogue of 18 top 20 UK smashes, including ‘House of Love’,’ Let it Rain’ and ‘It’s Alright’.

Dhs100. 8.30pm, December 16. McGettigan’s, Bonnington, JLT, www.mcgettigansdubai.com (04 35 60 560)

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