Heart Niagara Fallsview Casino Resort, Niagara Falls ON June 28

The sign on the drum set at centre stage read "Love Rules,” and for 1,500 Heart fans crammed into the Avalon Ballroom Theatre at Niagara’s Fallsview Casino Resort for the first of two shows, love ruled loudly. Some people in the crowd took time to get in the mood, perhaps thinking that they shouldn’t have left that run of good luck at the tables or at the slots. But for everyone else the anticipation and excitement was palpable, and the Wilson sisters with their energetic band did not disappoint. For an uninterrupted 90 minutes Ann Wilson commanded the stage. The set powered up immediately with "Magic Man,” "Little Queen” and "Straight On,” applause and cheers greeting the opening chords of each familiar song. In the venue’s intimate confines the dynamism of Ann’s voice was undeniable: a powerhouse on "Love Alive” and "Bebe Le Strange” and surprisingly supple and sweet in the harmonies of "Dog & Butterfly.” Like the younger sister waiting for her moment to step out from behind the older sibling, Nancy Wilson took charge with the evocative "These Dreams”; her soft vocals were then surprisingly echoed in Ann’s "Alone,” which built emotionally from quiet reflection to anguished power. The audience, hoarse from singing along with every word and shouting appreciation, danced in the aisles as the set ended with a driving "Barracuda” and "Crazy On You.” After a three-song encore, the crowd was still chanting, reluctant to leave without hearing one of Heart’s signature songs, "Dreamboat Annie” to which the Wilsons appreciatively obliged, closing the show with this haunting ballad.