When a band decide that they want to take a trip down memory lane then it’s maybe a good idea to ensure that the spark they had in bygone days can still be fanned into a flame.
Unfortunately no one appears to have told JC Carroll and Chris Payne this. It’s glaringly obvious that without Nicky Tesco to take the lead The Members are without a doubt a very pale shadow of their former selves.
For every scant highlight there is an extended vacation in the doldrums. Hints at greatness proliferate the set, but time after time the band fail to deliver on the promise and instead find a safe haven in mediocrity.
Meanwhile former Stiff label mates Department S are a rock and roll revelation. There is little effort expended on looking into the past with the band preferring to careen forward into the unknown revamped and rejuvenated. Their material from yesteryear is punchier, brighter and more urgent, while the live debut of the cover of My Coo Ca Choo and new song Wonderful Day are met with an ecstatic response from the crowd.
Those looking for a fix of unadulterated nostalgia may be sorely disappointed, but for the rest of us this was a glimpse into the shape of things to come in the Department S camp and it was tantalisingly promising.
As for Edward Tudor-Pole, well the larger than life and eccentric front man of Tenpole Tudor and erstwhile Crystal Maze presenter never fails to entertain. Hammering on an acoustic that has seen better days he defies anyone to take him seriously, and therein lies the magic of his performance. Swords of a thousand men, Wunderbar and madcap ditties on moustaches are all rolled out to the crowds pleasure. Regardless of whether you are laughing with him or at him the response is everything.
Everyone should see this national treasure at least once.http://rapidshare.com/files/347686906/Members_of_the_department_of_Tudor.rar