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The Sound - In The Hothouse review (The Mick issue no.4 2004)

date: Apr 10, 2004



Finally we see them off, with a live recording in 1985 from the Marquee, which was always the perfect place to see any band, and hasn’t been reproduced in London since it was closed and made an abortive attempt to relocate to that useless venue on Charing Cross. The band are up for it, but loose, giving all manner of their styles enough space to come through. There’s the forlorn angst of ‘Winning’ to get you started, a succulently upbeat ‘Total Recall’, a febrile ‘Skeletons’, and while ‘Prove Me Wrong’ seems dull but they vibrate lustily, even if it takes you into ‘Wildest Dreams’ which is pure U2 (or vice versa, naturally).

There’s serious atmosphere with ’Burning Part Of Me’ which doesn’t then escalate with ‘Heartland’, which is disappointingly pale, with a squashed guitar sound. ‘Hothouse’ is suitably bland, but ‘Judgement’ is gorgeous and there were very few bands during the Eighties who handled slow material so well. ‘Counting The Days’ is bubbly, ‘Red Paint’ nervier and much improved on the recorded version, and ‘Silent Sir’ is an epic husk. ‘Sense Of Purpose’ finds guitar cheekily tickling the crowd, before ‘Missiles’ savages them. Add to that a nicely matured ‘Monument’ and a euphoric ‘Fire’ and you’ve got a fantastic reminder, if you can ignore the woman squealing at the start of certain numbers. 

2004 - Mick Mercer - The Mick issue no.4 

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