It's rare to walk into a show where expectation and anticipation are so high as to practically fill a room with energy before a single note is struck, but that was the sense I got walking into the Hammersmith Apollo on Saturday evening. Around me groups of people talked excitedly, many dressed up for the occasion - their best attire reserved for such a special, one-off moment. Many had already taken their seats half an hour before the show itself was due to start. Not one person wanted to miss a single moment of this, and rightly so.

An announcement over the public address system reminding the assembled audience to turn off phones and refrain from photographing the event was welcomed with rapturous applause, signalling the imminent dimming of the house lights. When we were finally plunged into darkness we were treated to a short monologue taken from the opening of 'Lily' as the band stepped on to stage. When Kate Bush finally arrived the response was extraordinary. We rose as one, giving the kind of standing ovation that most acts only dream of achieving, all of this before the artist had uttered a word.

When finally she sang it was a marvel. The audience, hushed, engaged with every single note. It was as though we collectively took a deep breath. For a singer who (aside from a few occasional appearances) hasn't sung live for 35 years, it was incredible to hear that her voice hasn't diminished at all. Whilst Kate Bush generally avoided the higher pitched tracks of her back catalogue, her voice was gorgeous throughout, flitting between wild abandon, mournful laments and quiet introspection.

The backing band were also impeccable, taking us through a world of sound that was as richly detailed as anything from Bush's studio recordings, perhaps even more so. Electric and acoustic guitars, keyboards, an astonishing amount of percussion, and cello being just a few of the instruments I noticed played during the show. I'm almost certain there were more, it became difficult to tell once the band moved to the back of the stage for the latter part of the show's opening act.

I expected a certain level of theatricality at a Kate Bush show. Given the 35-year wait for her to return to the stage you'd have to be a fool to think this was going to be a simple greatest hits set. This was a show that only existed because the artist behind it was, for whatever reason, ready to show us something transcendent. Without wanting to give too much away, after performing a number of songs with a traditional set-up of backing band, vocalists and a light show, the curtain was lowered. Projected onto it was a short pre-recorded scene, scripted by novelist David Mitchell, that set the scene for the remainder of the first half.

This was where the show really came into its own. Whilst it most certainly opened on a high note - if Bush had performed just one song that evening I think many people would have walked out happy - what people will really remember, and be talking about for years to come, is what happened after that curtain fell. Through some interesting staging and use of video and lighting, Kate Bush and her supporting team (serious credit must be given to everyone on stage and behind the scenes) surpass any preconceptions about what a gig should be. The rest of the show could simply be described as magical, and indeed there were a few moments that made me stop and think, "how did they do that?" Even just by using the simplest, most basic elements Kate Bush managed to create something so otherworldly and engaging that everyone in the audience that night (and I'm sure this holds true for the entire run) just sat there, awe-struck.

The first half of the show is an epic, momentous performance piece that manages to be shocking, moving, but above all entertaining. There are even a few laugh out loud moments. By contrast the second half takes a far more intimate turn, using much starker staging (though still not without its moments of brilliance) but resulting in the evening's most beautiful, most affecting songs. Walking out of the show I was torn between which half I enjoyed the most, those audience members I spoke to afterwards, all of us wandering lost towards Hammersmith tube station, were similarly conflicted. Personally the second half sealed the deal for me, the simpler staging allowed us to refocus on the music, but still provided plenty of surprises along the way. As an audio visual experience it is unlikely to be bettered, the music was gorgeous and in the hours following the show I've been returning to thoughts conjured by that song cycle more than any other part of the show.

Before The Dawn ends on a triumphant note that, coupled with the show's title, hopefully hints at more to come from an artist who has delivered a performance that will be discussed and returned to for years to come. Kate Bush set out to deliver something unforgettable and certainly succeeded, but what she also achieved was to remind us of how powerful music can be. How these sounds and lyrics can conjure whole new worlds, tell us extraordinary stories and most importantly enrich our ordinary lives with a little bit of magic.