NINE years have been under the bridge since OMD last played with The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.

What better time for a two-night reunion.

While certain other giants were parading across Liverpool, our musical Titans from Meols were giving a master-class in song-writing and performing.

Andy McCluskey and Paul Humphreys are rightly celebrating their 40th anniversary.

It's hard to believe their first gig was four decades ago this very Friday.

The duo are firm friends and their beaming and satisfied smiles said it all as they made this an evening with strings attached where you could sit and listen and dance to their back catalogue and sparkling new material.

This two-and-a-half-hour production was a stunning, joyful, melancholic yet totally electric celebration of music, film and theatre.

I first interviewed them 40 years ago when I was invited to London by their record company Din Disc (I wore the souvenir t-shirt for years).

I knew by their integrity and sense of humour back then that they would be around for a long time.

I later saw them at a re-opened Eric's and at The Empire, but nothing compared to this faultless anniversary evening.

Both shows were recorded live for a two-CD album, which was available at the end of the concert.

A brilliant idea and a smashing keepsake.

For the eight song-strong, first-half dark be-suited Andy in tie and Paul in tie-less blue attire played what they called an 'esoteric, cultured set.'

It opened with the atmospheric Stanlow followed by Ghost Star and Sealand.

You could hear every single word from Andy, who passionately and theatrically sang poetic lyrics that cover every human emotion.

They also played a B side from the '90s called The New Dark Age with a chilling video backdrop.

OMD avoid clichés like the plague, but I have to say The View from Here was spine-tingly and beautiful and it had the hairs on the back of many heads standing.

After the interval Andy's was tie-less and wore an '80s stage shirt and Paul’s top button was released.

They were at home.

The greatest hits and tracks from the latest album Punishment of Luxury illustrated why they have stood the test of time.

The instrumental piece And Then She Saw the Minotaur from an art house film showed their diversity.

The audience lapped up the classics Messages, Souvenir, Maid of Orleans , Walking on the Milky Way, Enola Gay and Electricity.

The duo thanked conductor Richard Balcombe, the 70 piece RLPO and song arrangers Ian Stephens and Gary Carpenter.

This was Orchestral Manoeuvres ... in the bright lights with a little help from their friends and that includes the loyal audience.

Let's hope they do it all again – it's a priceless experience.