Last Tango In Newcastle
"Lindisfarne Live" - by Steve Clarke
from NME '73 - discovered by Michael Clayton

As a live album by a band still out on the road and recording together, this record wouldn't be justified, since its contents are inferior versions of most of Lindisfarne's best known material, recorded live at Newcastle City Hall, late 1971. But as a memory of one of England's most popular late '60s, early '70s bands who're no longer with us, its release is just about worthwhile - especially since Charisma are marketing this one, along with the Genesis live album, at 1.99.

When I say the songs are inferior versions that's meant to be seen entirely in the context of the band's recorded work. Included are Meet Me On The Corner, Fog On The Tyne, Alright On The Night and We Can Swing Together. Strangely enough, there's not Lady Eleanor which I thought the band always handled particularly well onstage. The highlight is undoubtedly Ray Jackson's harmonica bash on Swing Together which includes snippets of Auld Lang Syne, Jingle Bells and Coming Round The Mountain. And of course there's the audience participation which was at its best on home territory.

Looking back, it's not difficult to see why Lindisfarne never really made it in the States (one of the reasons for the split?) as they were such a completely English band. Really there's not much more to say about 'Lindisfarne Live', except that it stands as a memory. Not a sad memory for, since the split, two working bands have resulted and there's also been Alan Hull's excellent solo album [Pipedream].

Steve Clarke, NME