Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Life Support single re-released

30 years after it first burst onto the scene 95 copies of Life Support's debut single "About You" were found as Fat Al moved house. Clearly a sign that many had been lost in transit as 905 of the original press of 1000 surely hadnt been sold, or so we here at Deadbeat thought. At a recent reunion of Wood Mackenzie, it transpired that over 50 had made their ways into the hands or onto the turntables of these fine individuals and employees of Stocktrade claimed to have a fair old number between them.

The single which featured the 2 minute pop masterpiece "State of Mind" and dark drumming of Gothic urban angst anthem "The Penny drops.... as the mushroom rises" on the b-side had grown popular for the brief period that Peter at Pierhouse recorded it. By the time of the singles pressing the band had already started drifting apart and moving to different cities. Although broadcast locally on Radio Forth and nationally by John Peel the lack of interest from the band was self evident as the sales figures plummeted and the allure of the Tayside Bar grew.

As with many groups from the early 80's the band recently got back together to do a farewell tour, but as many of the venues had now gone the way of the Tayside bar, it would prove problematic. Si, Hilary, Rocky Reihill and Vin had met to discuss who would be the drummer and tried to draft  the Prof, JJ Salisbury and his boogie box, but the call was never answered. This proved sufficient distraction for Hilary to return to Dundee and Rocky to relocate to London, just as he had in 1984, leaving Si and Vin with a familiar problem. They then met with Rich who replaced Rocky in the mid 80's, but still no drummer appeared and Rich returned to London, just as he had in 1985. Finally Si, Vin & Gordon met up and dragged Ross out of retirement and as the last line up of Life Support they met up and performed one last time.

The gig was a slow burner. Vin & Tucker performed a respectfully quiet "Dock of the Bay", aided in no small measure by a power cut and poor acoustics. When the power was restored it became clear the vocal P.A. would enjoy a good fight with the electronic drums as the mixing desk mayhem ensued. Timeless classics, "On your Own", "The Donkey", "In the End", "State of Mind", "Penny Drops" and "About You" were all eschewed in favour of a Reckless Eric cover and abortive attempts at the Only Ones "its the truth" and "Another Girl, Another Planet". Completing the show with a 'Teenage Kicks' car crash the band triumphantly left the stage to rigorous applause and shouts of  derision. They returned to perform their London hit "Out of time, out of tune" but a burst bass string would prove fortuitous and with a shrug of the shoulders, a wave to the crowd and 4 fingers for the barman, they left the stage to drink their drink and hawk 95 singles to the downloading generation.