JAMESON RAID – Still Life- Fast Moving DVD (Independent)
After releasing one of the best albums of 2015, Jameson Raid have followed ‘Uninvited Guests’ with a double DVD package featuring the band’s original line-up of Terry Dark (vocals), Ian Smith (guitars), John Ace (bass) and Phil Kimberly (drums). The twist in the tail is that the footage spans 30 years, with the first disc combining footage from the band’s 2010 reformation gigs at the O2 Academy in Birmingham and the Robin 2 at Bilston, while the second contains highlights of a show shot in black and white by students at the Polytechnic of Wales in 1980; and although in that respect it’s a game of two very distinct halves, three decades apart, it’s amazing how – a few white hairs and wrinkles aside – the band have changed little, in particular in relation to their tightness on stage and their professionalism.
The Robin 2 in Bilston took place on Sunday 18th July 2010, with the O2 Academy gig the following Friday. It had been thirty years since the four of them had shared the same stage together, Smith once told me. “The last time was at Bogart’s in the summer of 1980. The atmosphere was superb as usual for a JR gig in Birmingham and everyone had a great time. The crowd knew it was our last gig though. One guy rather bizarrely said afterwards ‘you can’t split up; what am I going to tell my kids?’” So, many years after that gig, it was obvious from the off that the band had a lot to prove, and although only Dark now remains from those tentative reformation steps those two UK gigs five years ago set a marker on the sand that The Raid were back in business. What you get here is a cut-down amalgamation of the two shows, with classics like ‘Catcher In The Rye’ and ‘Hard Lines’ rubbing shoulders with the less familiar ‘Do It The Hard Way’ and ‘Sons Of Darkness’.
The 1980 film does show its age, it has to be said, and needed audio enhancement to tidy up the limitations of the original technology. Treat it as an official live bootleg though and savour the fact that it’s a fascinating time machine trip to the glory days of the NWOBHM and you won’t be disappointed. The second DVD also features four tracks – ‘It’s A Crime’, ‘Stop Looking At Me’, ‘The Raid’ and ‘Seven days Of Splendour’ – from the band’s 2010 show at the Headbangers Open Air festival, and an interesting Q&A session with Terry Dark.
‘Still Life- Fast Moving’ is available from the band’s website www.jamesonraid.co.uk and is possibly the perfect Christmas present…
© John Tucker November 2015