By Natalie Jamieson
Newsbeat entertainment reporter
Doves performing at Teenage Cancer Trust gig earlier in their career
Doves have returned to playing live after nearly three years away and judging by the crowd's standing ovation, it was worth the wait.
The special gig on 12 September at London's Royal Festival Hall was to celebrate the 18th birthday of label Heavenly Records.
Doves marked the occasion by opening with the instrumental Firesuite, track one from their first album Lost Souls.
They seemed happy, confident and relaxed to be back on stage.
Singer Jimi Goodwin tried to reason why they'd taken such a lengthy break, realising this was only their second gig in two years and seven months.
Jimi admitted "We don't actually know why we left it so long, we're probably just lazy."
Almost Forget Myself
Break Me Gently
Kingdom Of Rust
Caught By The River
There Goes The Fear
Black And White Town
For the Heavenly gig, Doves had fine support starting with an atmospheric acoustic set from Cherry Ghost before the Manic Street Preachers reprised the first six songs of their career.
The tracks were recorded for the label prior to them signing with Sony in 1991.
"It makes me wish we'd recorded more (with Heavenly)," Manics bassist Nicky Wire owned up, "but we took the big money and f***ed off to Sony."
He also paid tribute to lost member Richey Edwards as they energetically romped through classics such as Motown Junk and You Love Us.
Nicky and singer James Dean Bradfield seemed to be enjoying going over old ground, leaping and whirling around the stage.
When it was Doves turn, they also ran through a number of old favourites including Snowden and Pounding, as well as showcasing new material that will appear on their fourth studio album, due next year.
"I enjoyed the new stuff," said 27 year-old Brad from Essex. "They did a new one that sounded a bit westerny, really enjoyed that one."
"It was a bit like Johnny Cash," said his mate Stuart, 27, also from Essex. "It was brilliant."
There were a couple of complaints about the bass being too loud, and a few people felt the song sequence didn't flow.
Still, the band were on stage for just over an hour and a half and rattled through 17 songs.
Before launching into Caught by the River, Jimi Goodwin dedicated the track to his father, saying there was "no one more rock'n'roll than my dad."
They then went into There Goes the Fear, rounding off the main set with a carnival-style drum and rhythm break down.
Manic Street Preachers paid tribute to former member Richey Edwards
There was just time for a three song encore, before the night ended with another song from Lost Souls, The Cedar Room.
There are no more gigs planned yet but Doves can be satisfied with their long awaited live return.
"Excellent concert," said 29 year-old Oliver from Maidstone. "Doves are a fantastic band, they always have been and their music is tip top."