Saturday, February 16, 2013

Curtain Call: Dexys Midnight Runners From '82

Whenever I think of Dexys Midnight Runner's second album, 'Too-Rye-Ay,' the first thing that comes to mind is just the enormity of it all. I once heard the band's discography described this way: The first album is for the true fans, and the third album is for the critics, but the second album, the second album is for everybody, and I mean everybody, else. Ten songs appear on the original issue of 'Too-Rye-Ay,' and half of them are singles. Honestly, there isn't a bad moment on the record, but my favorite song, the closer to side one, would probably be deemed a deep cut by most. Let's listen to a live performance of that song.

This take of "Old," from the B-side of the 12" single "Let's Get This Straight (From the Start)," was recorded at London's Shaftesbury Theatre in October 1982. Kevin Rowland somehow makes this lament seem even more dramatic on stage than he did in the studio. I particularly like that the jangle of the banjo is miked a little high. Helen O'Hara and her crew of violinists deserve special mention as well. I have never had the pleasure of seeing Dexys live, and this is the performance that makes me regret that the most.

Dexys Midnight Runners - Old (Live) (mp3)

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