Human League / Alvin Stardust / Dave Berry & The
Cruisers / Howcher / Snatch
motley crew, this…
no more than a competent club band run through a series
of covers. Howcher
shows he has the potential to be taken seriously
as a blues singer if he can get his record company to
ditch his Most Beautiful Man image.
Dave Berry & The Cruisers hark back
to Berry’s heyday in the early 60’s without making fools
The Human League…The Human League?
their first live appearance in two years, it was the
League’s own idea to join this motley bunch playing
on home turf and gaining little in the way of PR fanfare
for themselves whilst undoubtedly much to boost the
takings for this, a benefit gig for Ethiopia, over the
their decision to appear came as something of
a surprise, then so too did the performance.
Shorn of banks of electronics, they have
gained the human element which, until now, has
made their name ring false by its absence.
With the temporary addition for this one-off
of a Comsat Angel on the only set of keyboards,
another on guitar, Ian Burdon on bass
and, egads! a living drummer, the result is still
unmistakably The Human League, but the
songs have gained an edge that gives them a new
lease of life.
In Electric Dreams
becomes almost raunchy in its non-electric reality.
Louise finds Oakey’s girls so enthusiastic
that the blond in miniscule skirt and brunette in negligible
shirt become the focus of attention for males in search
of accidental revelations.
With a punchy new dance number, their voices
give an almost singalong feel, whilst Oakey, whose weight
(increased during his absence) combined with the boyish
clean-cut image giving the illusion of puppy fat, acts
childishly petulant in keeping with the lyrics of Don’t
You Want Me, it’s powerhouse backing showing it
to be more than the weak song it had always seemed…
and then, all too soon, the new-look League are gone
to be replaced by… Alvin Stardust??
whatever you might think of the man, he does his best
and pleases his fans, swelling the cash that is to save
lives in Ethiopia and that’s what matters.
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