2/28/15

The Only Ones - Live at the Electric Ballroom (1980)


Sorry, I'm a bit late on re-up requested, I took some days off but now I'm back and if M is not destroyed by freedom hunters of the web, I'll do my best to fulfil re-up expectations. Here I chose to begin with this Only Ones live recording. When I listen to this live captured set, I doubt there has been a better live band on the planet but maybe I'm wrong. In 1980, the Only Ones were maybe the most stoned junkie bunch of musicians in activity but on stage they were no less than magical. I can't imagine a more intemporal music than this one. Listen to this version of "The Beast" before deciding what is genius. Catch this incredible document here. PS to iceman. The Paradiso concert was re-up recently (here) and is totally available on M.

Here we find the band 6 months after the Paradiso concert (here) but it's a rather different band. Tensions are strong between members (some of them want to "place" their songs and begin to be unease with the position of sole composer of Peter Perrett... they were wrong actually, it was a good thing) and desillusion begins to grow (Baby's Got A Gun album was badly produced by a producer mandatory sent by the label, it sells rather poorly, Ajouter une imageno single succeeded in the charts and drugs were beginning to eat every bit of motivation). The concert is very different from the one played at the Paradiso. Faster (they sometimes seem to call for a quick end), tighter (Peter Perrett plays much better and the band seems to behave as a whole and unique entity), it's a dynamic set with some ups (the songs from Baby's Got A Gun, here in their truly Only Ones versions) and some downs (some older songs, sometimes botched or with bad options, for example what the fuck is this half-reggae version of "Miles From Nowhere"?). This concert was captured on 2 nights at the Electric Ballroom of Camden and released in 1989 on Mau Mau label under the name of Live (I did another cover sleeve cos' I thought the official album one, a close shot ot Peter Perrett's face, was rather unappropriate). Note that it was wrongly suggested on the back cover sleeve to be captured at the Speakeasy in 1977. Among my interrogations, is this strange (and scandalous) fade at the end of "Why Don't You Kill Yourself". If someone could tell me WTF. To conclude, I would say that this concert, in spite of all its low parts, is for me the symbol of what I would have dreamed to do on stage with a band. Yes, nothing can be more close to this dream than this concert. Therefore, you understand the fixation I do about this band. More to come. A good way to finish the year. Hoping this blog will reach the end of next one (but I know predators are here to kill it so I'm not sure)



7 comments:

Peter Downing said...

Hi,
A true Only Ones fan! I agree with all your comments about the music on this recording. What is even better is that you've used my photo on the back cover. The full set from that concert can still be seen at peterdowning.co.uk

Foxy said...

Wow, I've been looking for that album for about 15 years now, since I sold my copy for gear back all those moons ago. That was a special concert, best live album (best album, full stop).

Anyway, thanks a million for sharing this (you can't even buy it).

back to the oldies said...

Thanks a lot, this one is perfect !!!

Corvus said...

I remember these so well and they were brilliant live!

Best of all my daughter is now into this stuff and she re-introduced me to them, never knew how much I missed them, so thanks for providing these.

iceman said...

Hi dkelvin. Any chance for a re-up of this live Only Ones? Thanks in advance! Cheers.

Audrey Songeval said...

Je suis impatiente de découvrir ce groupe sur scène. Avec un tel répertoire et un tel chanteur, vraiment je suis très curieuse.

cgm said...

Saw them 2 or 3 times, and you're right. They were one of the best live bands of that, or any other, time. Thanks for this post.