The Damned - Final Damnation - Cassette tape on Restless Records

The Damned – Final Damnation – Cassette tape on Restless Records

 

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The Damned – Final Damnation – Cassette

Rumors of the band’s breakup were, once again, flying at the time of this release, thus the title, but more than a few relapses have occurred. The concert that was captured, though, would have served as fine a way to bow out as any due to the unique lineup of the show, and the rip-roaring performances. Besides the then-current Rat Scabies/Roman Jugg/Dave Vanian/Bryn Merrick quartet — the longest-lasting lineup of all, and here taking a fine final bow — original guitarist/songwriter Brian James and legendary guitarist/freak-case Captain Sensible appear here. Though the disc itself doesn’t indicate who plays on what cut, likely enough James is on the first half of the set, which consists of almost nothing but songs he wrote from the band’s legendary debut Damned Damned Damned. As for the Captain, he’s on, if not all the songs, definitely the second half, mostly focusing on songs from Machine Gun Etiquette. Given the overwhelmingly retrospective cast of the performance — the newest song that appears is 1980s “Wait for the Blackout” — one can safely say this was about when the Damned fully became a nostalgia band, albeit one that could still kick major booty. All the Damned Damned Damned cuts — even the classically rude “Fish” — still smoke with the rapid-fire energy that characterized the original album, as does the notorious one-minute-long reduction of the Beatles’ “Help.” As for the Machine Gun Etiquette selections, winners like “I Just Can’t Be Happy Today” and “Smash It Up” nestle alongside more obscure cuts like “Melody Lee” and “Noise Noise Noise.” Highlights of the on-stage antics include the Captain’s insistence, to the general disbelief of all, that “We’re not doing this for the money! I’m doing it for you people because I love you!” It all wraps up with a fine version of the Rolling Stones’ “The Last Time,” which would have made one good way to fully bow out if this had really been it.

Song List
See Her Tonight
Neat Neat Neat
Born To Kill
I Fall
Fan Club
Fish
Help
New Rose
I Feel Alright
I Just Can’t Be Happy Today
Wait For The Blackout
Melody Lee
Noise Noise Noise
Love Song
Smash It Up
Looking At You

FINAL DAMNATION is a live recording of The Damned reunion concerts held at the London Town And Country Club on June 13, 1988 featuring the original lineup.Includes liner notes by Paul Lester.

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