Slade's crazee night
SLADE / OPERA HOUSE, BLACKPOOL 20/4/1974
THE opening night of Slade's British tour not only turned out to be a Crazee Nite, it was absolute lunacy. The minute they walked onstage the audience piled up to the front and there was no way they could be shifted.
Security men tried to keep control, but the people at the front were so crushed they couldn't be extricated. After a while, the stewards gave up and watched the show along with everyone else. Noddy Holder and Dave Hill stood only a tantalising four inches back from the outstretched fingers and the only thing the girls could reach were the mike stands.
They opened with 'Take Me Bak 'Ome' and the roars of both the music and the audience was deafening. Even after repeated visits to Slade concerts, they're still one of the most exciting bands to watch. Noddy's control and handling of the show is superb. He can quieten them when he wants and bring them to a frenzy at the wave of a finger.
The act has changed only slightly, to take in numbers from the last album, but they still do the favourites, including 'Gudbuy T' Jane', 'Move Over Baby' and 'Cum On Feel The Noize'. However they have stopped using the precarious pedestals they used to have. Instead Dave Hill and Jim Lea have two flights of more solid looking stairs to mount, to keep them in full view of the crowd.
The tour is the first drummer Don Powell has made in Britain since his car accident, and it's obvious that his fans have missed him. He looks much better, and, like the rest of the band his playing was excellent.
It was interesting to hear them do 'Everyday' onstage - it's first public airing, and I'm pleased to say it sounded just as fine as the record. Nod got the audience to sing a couple of verses of it by themselves - a lot of the time, it would seem that Slade don't even need to sing their own songs, because the crowd almost sings louder anyway. He also got them going on 'You'll Never Walk Alone' an all time favourite for Slade fans who were swaying like a football crowd by this time.
They closed with 'Get Down And Get With It', a number always guaranteed to bring the house down - and it very nearly did.
ROZ MARTINI, NEW MUSICAL EXPRESS, 27 APRIL 1974
From the archive of Slade In England
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