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Saturday 6 January 2024

Saturday Live

I took this photo nearly two years ago today. I found it in my folder recently and knew exactly where and when I took it. I had returned to work following Isaac's death six weeks earlier and was on reduced hours, arriving home earlier than usual every day. On this day, 8th January 2022, I got home and went for a walk, ending up at Sale Water Park as the sun went down (about 4.30pm). At that point I took this photo, I looked at the sunset, the barren line of trees, the bleakness of mid- winter and my feelings of shock and grief. Everything felt empty. If the universe decided to swallow me up right there and then, gone in an instant, pop, nothing left, I'd have been quite happy. Or at least resigned to it. I can remember thinking it quite vividly. I wasn't going to do anything about it, I wasn't going to do anything silly, I just felt like if the universe had decided to end at that moment (or end me), it wouldn't have bothered me. 

And here we are now two years later. Things do change. 

For most of last year Saturday posts were Saturday live, bands, artists, musicians playing live on TV or at gigs. I haven't done one since November and toyed with dropping it but I have a few more that were on my list of unwritten posts and this one has some moments of beauty and genius from one of Manchester's greatest musicians and still a fairly unsung hero, Vini Reilly. There are lots of Durutti Column gigs and performances on the internet and some released as official recordings too. 

This one is Domo Arigato, The Durutti Column live at Shinagawa, Tokyo on 25th April 1985, Vini on guitar, keys and vocals, Bruce Mitchell on drums, John Metcalfe on violin and Tim Kellett on trumpet. It was released on VHS and CD (as FACD 144), a nine song set opening with Sketch For Summer and Sketch For Dawn and closing with For Belgian Friends and The Missing Boy, fifty five minutes of peak DC, Vini's playing exceptional and elegiac. The coming together of guitar, drums, trumpet and violin on Little Mercy, four songs in, is something else. An expanded edition of Domo Arigato came out in 2017, a three CD plus DVD box containing the full gig, remastered versions, extra tracks with a previously unreleased performance from Tokyo Loft Club in 1984. It's not possible to have too much Durutti Column. 

This one is three years later, Durutti Column live in Portugal, a favourite haunt of Vini and Bruce, this time an hour and a quarter's worth of music, sixteen songs with Andy Connell (ex- ACR and Swing Out Sister on keys and sampler). 

Who would want to be swallowed up by the universe standing by a suburban water park at sunset when these things exist in the world?

I've posted this clip before, a stunning performance of Bordeaux Sequence at Manchester Cathedral in 1985, one of my favourite DC songs, clips and performances. Everything about it is completely special. 

Three songs to download here, all from the expanded three CD version of The Guitar And Other Machines (originally released on Factory in 1987 and then re- issued in 2017), one from a gig at The Bottom Line in New York in October 1986 and two from WOMAD in August 1988. 

When The World (Live At The Bottom Line 1987)

Tomorrow (Live at WOMAD 1988)

Bordeaux Sequence (Live at WOMAD 1988)


Anonymous said...

Lovely post. Tremendous music. I really enjoy this series Adam, I've never really explored the Durutti Column but I will be after today. So thanks.

C said...

"...And here we are now two years later. Things do change." Just to say - you're an inspiration.

Anonymous said...

Thanks C, the second half of November and December were really hard and getting past Christmas in one piece felt like a struggle at times. At times those 2 months were as difficult as any of the last 2 years. Getting into January has been a blessing. I used to find January a bit grim but now it's become a relief after Nov and Dec. So things do change, definitely. And in ways you don't expect.
Swiss Adam

JC said...

"Who would want to be swallowed up by the universe standing by a suburban water park at sunset when these things exist in the world?"

It's awfy dusty up here in Villain Towers at this moment in time....why else would my eyes be watering??

I just want to second what C said up above. Keep On Keepin' On.........