Odds and sods about the British rock band Slade

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Lochem broadcast from VARA Television

When Slade played Lochem in Holland, 1981, the Dutch VARA Television recorded the whole gig. However, only 3 of the songs were broadcasted, but luckily I've been able to see those 3 songs and they are superb.
The first of the broadcasted songs is Gudbuy T'Jane in a high speed version. You can see that it's from the end of the concert as Jim, Nod and Dave have taken off their jackets. It's the only song where you get a good look at Don and he comes across strong as ever on his drums, here in a baby-blue top. I've always wondered how that man pulled it off looking so masculine no matter how sissy his clothes were! I mean, who else could sport say a polka-dotted outfit in the 1970's and still look like a killer? You've always been a snappy dresser, Don, I'm impressed! Anyway, the guys really put on a show despite cameramen running around all over the stage. You also get a good look at the crew (nice) and the huge AND captivated audience going wild, wild, wild!!
The second song is Get Down And Get With It, the last song before the encores. This is also a very fast rendition. The stage is perfectly made for the show with small, extended stages for Dave and Jim to enter and huge podiums to mount. Jim is going crazy as usual and has his shirt unbuttoned by now. The interaction between Nod and Don is just perfect here and Dave is running around, teasing the audience. You get a good look at Chas Chandler as well as he is watching the show from the wings. The end of the song sees Jim kicking and mutilating his poor bass.
The last song is Born To Be Wild, the last of the encores with lots of bog roles on the stage floor and the whole band sweating like pigs. Jim has now taken off his shirt, but Nod has put on a bowler hat and the sweat is dripping from Dave's hair. Hmm, here I go again with Slade and sweat. A recurring theme, me thinks. Anyway, there are some nice crosscuts between Dave and Jim although the guys play so fast that the television editor can't keep up with them and finally decides to stay on Jim. It pays off, as Jim is playing the bass with his teeth (eat your heart out, Hendrix!) and sticks that battered instrument to the speakers for feedback. The audience is really into it, raised hands in the air and all.
Slade was always at their best when playing live and these Lochem songs fully illustrate that. Too bad, that the rest of the concert was never aired as I would really love to see it.


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