Take A Running Jump (Siréne-081)
Theatre Royal, Drury lane, London – January 20th, 1974
Disc 1: Watcher Of The Skies, Dancing With The Moonlit Knight, The Cinema Show, I Know What I Like, Firth Of Fifth, Harold The Barrel, The Musical Box
Disc 2: Horizons, More Fool Me (vocals by Phil Collins), The Battle Of Epping Forest, Old Michael Story, Supper’s Ready
Take A Running Jump is a CDR release of the well known and well circulated Drury Lane Theater Royal tape on Sirene. The band played five shows in this venue, January 13th, 15th, 16th, 18th, and the 20th. Unfortunately this is the only tape that exists of this well known series, but the sound quality is very good. It is a bit distant from the stage with some echo surrounding Peter Gabriel’s stories. The music is loud enough to compensate and the audience isn’t too intrusive. There are some minor cuts between some of the songs and unfortunately the story of Harold before “The Musical Box” is edited. Nevertheless this is a remarkable document from the height of the Selling England By The Pound era.
The mellotron introduction to “Watcher Of The Skies” sounds very moody and ominous in this recording with the tension being slashed with the entrance of the rest of the band. Gabriel tells the Britannia story before “Dancing With The Moonlit Knight”. “Firth Of Fifth” is introduced with the story of the woman stripping her skin exposing the rod which was made famous from its inclusion on Genesis’ first live LP. The center of interest on this tape is the rare inclusion of “Harold The Barrel” from Nursery Cryme. Someone close to the tape loudly requests the tune and Gabriel replies, “this is one for the old timers”. It makes me wonder if this tune was included in all of the Drury Lane shows. Hopefully someday a tape will surface which might confirm my speculation.“Horizons” is played electrically and Steve Hackett departs for Mike Rutherford and Phil Collins for a pretty version of “More Fool Me”.
The old Michael story contains Gabriel’s and Collins’ scat version of “Jerusalem” before a great version of “Supper’s Ready”. The audience is quiet throughout before applauding loudly when Gabriel ascends to the rafters on his way to Jerusalem at the end. Like many other shows on this tour there is no encore. Take A Running Jump ’74 is the first commercial release of this tape and it is very good. It has wide distribution on the trading circuit with the latest incarnation from the Bataitis Ultimate Remaster Project (BURP). It sounds like Sirene have done their own unique mastering to it by increasing the volume and minimizing the tape hiss to make this sound very nice. This is another Sirene title worth having.