David Bowie, Hammersmith Odeon, London, 02-10-02

There was a particular feeling pervading the former Hammersmith Odeon last night: privilege. The buzz, the whispers, the excitement; rarely has a performance been as easily anticipated as this one. As a veteran of only three previous Bowie concerts, this was it. The one to tell people you attended; the one to boast about.

The arrival of Bowie on stage felt like the ultimate in fevered anticipation. As Garson strolled out, sat behind his piano and launched into the familiar opening of Life on Mars we strained to catch a glimpse. And then, there he was. Outfitted in a blue silk suit, with (tied) tie, he sauntered, in that particular way of his, to centre stage as the theatre erupted. And from that moment you knew it was going to be a night like no other. That long, cold night on the concrete outside the venue last Friday was going to be worth it, as we always knew.

Before we could blink he was off - Ashes to Ashes, Look Back in Anger and the "first cowboy song of the night", Cactus followed. The set was a blur as the songs came thick and fast. I'm sure someone will have written it down but I sat in awe as he thundered through the songs that have defined and accompanied all our lives. His trademark energy puts us all to shame - his boundless, ceaseless zest for all the material was astounding.

The Heathen tracks sat beautifully next to the other songs - 5.15, Slip Away, Afraid, I've Been Waiting for You took their rightful place alongside Fame, Fashion, Breaking Glass and so on. The welcome addition of Absolute Beginners was a surprise and everyone smiled as David and Gail danced around the stage as it ended. Not to be outdone he then uttered the famed phrase "not only is this the last show of the tour." The crowd sank to a hush then a cheer as he repeated the line he had once said many years before then he added "but this is the last show we'll ever do." then a pause for dramatic effect before adding "on the day of a fucking Tube strike!"

A cheeky stripped down version of Rebel Rebel had the crowd howling in delight and the gorgeous title track of Heathen ended the first part of the show. Everyone sat, simply stunned in submission by what we were watching and before we could catch our breath he was back again with the sublime Sunday. If the exact song order is sketchy it can only be because it was hard to centre oneself after such a night. Then came the moment I had been dreaming of for as long as I can remember – my favourite song live.

"I'm an alligator." My heart jumped a hundred feet. "I'm a rock and rolling bitch for you." If the gig had been 99.9% perfect until now this was the missing link. I never thought in any wild dream that I would see him perform Moonage Daydream let alone in this venue. Before (or after, still hazy on specifics) someone threw a black and silver feather boa on stage which David picked up and draped around his neck as he had once done before on this same stage. This has been hard to write, as usually a review must have balance, the parts liked with the parts not as much. This was impossible as, genuinely, as all the moments had been just as I imagined every night before this. Now it had been made real.

Then as if it was the most casual announcement it came: "We've only ever performed this song once before.". I think my heart actually stopped as I thought, no chance, he isn't actually going to do this song is he? It just wasn't possible - that we could witness only the second ever public performance of. "This one's called the Bewlay Brothers." He thought no one would know it but the vast majority if the crowd knew exactly how much this one meant. It was word perfect. Can't wait to get the bootleg.

I was stunned after that; to be lucky enough to hear this song performed live was something that left me speechless. It was a wonderful blur - Everyone Says Hi, Starman, Changes, I never wanted it to end. But it must and what better way to make grown men weep than with a roof-raising rendition of Ziggy Stardust. He has so far to go, so many great moments yet to bestow on us.

Life On Mars?
Ashes To Ashes
Look Back In Anger
Breaking Glass
China Girl
Slip Away
Absolute Beginners
Alabama Song
Speed of Life
Be My Wife
I’m Afraid of Americans
5:15 The Angels Have Gone
I’ve Been Waiting For You
Rebel Rebel
Heathen (The Rays)
I Would Be Your Slave
Moonage Daydream
A New Career In A New Town
Everyone says 'Hi'
The Bewlay Brothers
Sound and Vision
Hallo Spaceboy
Let's Dance
Ziggy Stardust