Live in Philadelphia, PA, 1982 - Reviews
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Date Submitted: 12-Jun-03
By: Jack Bross (jabross at bellsouth dot net)
"I'll save you the trouble of adding up the times. It's about 79 minutes, so that's a single well-stuffed CD. Audio quality isn't perfect, but it's about as good as we've got for Live 80's Crim: slight distortion that might or might not have been part of the original live sound, slightly muffled high end, but everything comes through pretty cleanly. No audience noise to speak of.
"The band is in pretty good form throughout, and although Sid Smith's notes single out Ade as MVP, I'd actually say things are pretty evenly spread out. For me, the high points are unlikely tunes: "The Howler", rarely heard live and much better than on the LP; "The Sheltering Sky", which is also something of a live rarity and features some great work by Robert; "Heartbeat", which I normally think of as pretty disposable but which comes through very well here; and "Sartori in Tangier", which is frankly amazing. "Sartori" is used in the manner of "The Talking Drum" to set up "Larks II", which itself receives a really energetic and powerful reading. My only complaint on "Red" and "Larks II" in fact is that I wish that somebody had hidden the flanger before the concert, as I find the sound it produces rather dated. "Red" is, if anything, owned by the rhythm section, which makes it an interesting reading.
"On "Thela", "Indiscipline" and "Neurotica", Adrian is relatively loose with the lyrics of the spoken portions. Some of the storytelling gets lost on "Thela", but musically it's a funky and tight rendition. "Indiscipline" has the extended percussion introduction, and features some nice telepathy between the players on the tempo changes. It's not better than such competing versions as the one on "Absent Lovers", but it's a strong version. "Neurotica" is always a good track live.
"Over all, this is a very valuable release. "Absent Lovers" is still the primary recommendation for live 80's Crim, but this is the strongest of the Club releases by this line-up. Caution: listening to "Sartori" will get you drooling with anticipation for new recordings with Tony."