UB40 – UB40 Live (1982) – Lp
UB40 are an English reggae and pop band, formed in December 1978 in Birmingham. The ethnic make-up of the band’s original line-up was diverse, with musicians of English, Irish, Jamaican, Scottish and Yemeni parentage.
Title: UB40 Live
Label: DEP International
The set catches them live in 1982 with material from the no-nonsense first three albums. It’s bursting with excellent, hook-laden tunes, recorded superbly. The band is on top form, playing chilled yet thrilling rhythms as if their lives depended on it.
UB40‘s “Live” is an excellent way to show how to record an impressive live performance record. It’s not just about the hectic joy of the audience and/or unexpectations during a random live performance, it’s the (brass) instruments and especially that sweet, sweet saxophone which gives birth to dozens of excellent melodies! This is what UB40 is all about! Just look at the front cover! Frankenstein’s monster listening to music from his earphones at a studio! I think i have never seen anything like this on the album front covers. I think i have never seen Frankenstein’s monster on a front cover! Simple colours, simple realization! Just like how old reggae releases were done.
“Live” has two live shows which each of them is seperated in their own side. Side A works well, it includes many great songs such as “Sardonicus”, “Don’t Slow Down” and “Tyler”, but i think the best songs are in side B. Side A also took me more time to memorize the songs. I really love it how “One In Ten” starts and gets even wilder during the end till the lead guitar starts changing from reggae to rock. I also love it how UB40 utilizes other music styles during the show. “Present Arms” is an amazing starter which adds a massive amount of brass elements and “Burden of Shame” sounds like somebody recorded someone’s snoring. The politic message in this song is very present: “As a nation we’re following blindly, no-one stops to question why, our money’s supporting an army, and a boy in Soweto dies. I’m a British subject, not proud of it, when i carry the burden of shame”. It really makes you think. These three songs must be the best songs from this live album.
1. Food For Thought (4:40)
2. Sardonicus (4:57)
3. Don’t Slow Down (3:20)
4. Folitician (5:45)
5. Tyler (6:18)
1. Present Arms (4:52)
2. The Piper Calls The Tune (4:00)
3. Love Is All Is Alright (5:10)
4. Burden Of Shame (6:20)
5. One In Ten (4:38)