Live at Montreux 1980

Eagle Records

Back during the musically desolate times of the 1980s, there was one record that everyone agreed to have as late-night, after-the-show, party music: Seconds of Pleasure by Rockpile. Bedrock simple, the combined talents of Dave Edmunds, Nick Lowe, Billy Bremner, and drummer Terry Williams rang true to everyone, be it the punk/new wave corner who came to it because of Lowe’s production of Elvis Costello, or the Status Quo/AC-DC fan that found a common thread in the pub-rock roots of Edmunds. By the time “Play the Fast Thing (One More Time)” or “Knife and Fork” came around, beers would be drunk and everyone would have a smile.

Now, if we had Live at Montreux 1980 back then, I think the party might still be going strong. This 16-track example of Rockpile’s magic never lets up. Although they only released one record under the name Rockpile, the four were the band for Nick Lowe’s Labour of Lust, Edmunds’ Track’s on Wax 4 and 1979’s Repeat When Necessary, as well as Musical Shapes from Lowe’s then wife, Charlene Carter. They played together seamlessly, with Edmunds’ deep rockabilly and country roots fed thru Chuck Berry guitar, coupled with Nick Lowe’s “pure pop” sense, and you hear it all on this live disc. From the opener, “Sweet Little Lisa,” to Lowe’s version of Mickey Jupp’s “Switchboard Susan,” Costello’s “Girls Talk,” or a brilliant Edmunds romp thru Graham Parker’s “Crawling From The Wreckage,” this is one great band doing what great bands do: Rock without pretense, backing tracks, or Star Wars light shows.

When Dave Edmunds brings the night to a close with the rockabilly chestnut, “Let’s Talk About Us,” you can tell they could play another hour or two — and you wish they had. Live at Montreux 1980 is a grand reminder of one of greatest bands ever, and will bring a smile to those who remember them well. “They Called It Rock” indeed!

Eagle Rock Entertainment:

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