Wild Eyed Boys (Shades-464)
This top of the line recording is in two parts; disc 1 us from the hammersmith odeon,london 15th november 1976
disc 2 is from the rivera theatre chicago,illinois 21st april 1976
The show begins with a blistering guitar attack of jailbreak which will garner anyone’s attention!! Phil is definitely in fine form for this passionate show!
Following is a very well balanced massacre showcasing the perfect rhythmic flow between phil’s bass and brian’s drumming with the guitar interplay in perfect flow; a rather intense rocker. Still in love with you presents a smooth as ice phil on vocal with splendid guitar interplay.johnny the fox meets jimmy the weed us next with phil’s vocals powerfully connecting with the dual guitar playing. The boys are back in town follows with Phil stating “this is the one they released as a single”-amazing how much power is released here with phil’s bass leading the way with stellar firepower provided by brian and scott on their respective guitars. Phil introduces rosalie as “a bob seger one we are going to try and get you moving on”.
Rosalie is definitely an all out rocker (i can imagine the audience moving and shaking to this powerful boogie number). Suicide follows with some stellar drumming interspersed with some splendid lead playing. The warrior is next with some unusual eerie guitar interplay reminding us how good thin lizzy were; intense, passionate and fiery. me and the boys urge the crowd participation as phil seems to have total control of the audience. me and the boys along with the rocker close disc 1 with the rocker leaving no doubts as to the quality of this stereo soundboard. Disc 2 begins with jailbreak followed by the boys are back in town.
Emerad is the next track with some excellent guitar playing with phil’s bass fitting the mood here in a very heavy mode. It’s only money showcases the two guitars,drums and phil’s vocals in an almost hypnotic scenario. Blues Boy os introduced by Phil as “one that me and brian wrote”-brian and phil present wonderful exchanges of lines here along with some excellent blues licks by brian; catching the crowd’s attention with powerful notes. After rosalie and suicide Angel from the coast has some great riffing by both brian and scott with phil adding his great bass to it. Baby drives me crazy has the audience on its feet as the band opens up full bore no holds barred.
The rocker closes disc 2 with all in all a superb performance. If this isn’t the finest release of this year (so far) it is near the top!! A wonderful 2 cd release of 2 GREAT shows! The quality in its own right is A++; a brilliant stereo soundboard of an often overlooked band, that not near enough live shows have been known to showcase them. If you are a thin lizzy fan you need this; or… if you love great rock’n’ roll by all means obtain this wonderful release!
Beat me to the punch pookie as I was writing my review today so I will just add to your review. The Hammersmith show is from the “Johnny the Fox” album tour and was the second of three consecutive dates at that venerable venue, with the band Clover opening, and each was recorded for possible use on the “Live and Dangerous” LP. In fact based on the intro I believe “The Rocker” from this show might actuall5y be the version used on that Live release. As far as I can tell this is the first silver release for this show and the recording is indeed excellent with a wide sound stage and stereo separation. Robbo and Scott’s guitars are prominent in the mix with Downey’s drums slightly in the background. The mix is a little bright but not distractingly so. What I did find a little distracting was there is a noticeable reverb on Phil Lynott’s vocals which does not seem to affect the instrumentals. On some songs it gives the vocals an almost detached feeling from the rest of the music and on “The Boys are back in Town” The rest of the bands backup vocals are oddly absent leaving hole in the song. Highlights for me were the songs from the new album. The performance is tight but seemed a little rushed but despite the odd reverb it is an EX SB recording.
The Chicago show is from 3rd show of the first leg of the U.S. tour to support the recently released “Jailbreak” album, with Lizzy opening for BeBop Deluxe, and was broadcast on the Chicago radio station WXRT-FM. This has been released before on the silver title “Irish Dawn” in 1992 on the Italian label “Poetry in Motion”. That recording is much inferior to this new release as it is muddy and muffled at times and sounds like it came from a high generation source. In comparison this new release is an excellent FM broadcast recording with a wide soundstage and excellent stereo separation and does not suffer from the compression typical of radio broadcasts. It has a little more mid-range warmth to it then the Hammersmith show and not quite as bright. It also features an unreleased Thin Lizzy song “Blues Boy” which features some scorching solos by Robbo and Scott. The other highlight for me was the song “Angel from the Coast”. I found the performance to be a little more relaxed and energetic then Hammersmith and I would probably rate this recording a little higher then the Hammersmith recording as the sound is near perfect.
The great thing about this set is you get two shows from the classic lineup with each show featuring a different album so the set lists vary enough to make both essential to own. Thin Lizzy silver releases are a rare bird and shows from the classic lineup in this quality are even rarer so this set ranks up there with the 1977 Philly show no label release “Breakout” as the two best Lizzy releases I own. Highly recommended any Lizzy fan seek out a copy. classicrawker