Thursday, August 25, 2011
Back in 1980 the “Dean” of American rock critics Robert Christgau named The Clash, Gang of Four and Rockpile as the greatest live bands then playing. Having seen all 3 of these bands live at least once during 1980 I knew this was true. Sadly there has been scant evidence of the greatness of the British all-star group known as Rockpile, until this week. Rockpile was Nick Lowe on bass, Dave Edmunds and Billy Bremner on guitar and Terry Williams on drums. With the release of the new “Live at Montreux 1980” this week we now have ample evidence of this groups amazing ability to rock. I did not realize until listening to this record this week what a powerful and unrelenting rhythm section Nick Lowe and Terry Williams were. This album contains blistering live versions of so many classics from Dave and Nicks “solo” records: Crawling from the Wreckage, Girls Talk, Swichboard Susan, I knew the Bride (when she used to rock n’ roll), Queen of Hearts and So it Goes. This is classic rock n’ roll of the highest order and delivered with sledgehammer power.