Back home in triumph
for powerhouse Slade
SLADE / CIVIC HALL, WOLVERHAMPTON, 7/12/1980
Noddy Holder and Dave Hill, playing for all they were worth, when glimpsed through the waving arms and dry ice at the Civic Hall, Wolverhampton, put me more in mind of Motorhead, rather than the group that held sway over the pop charts in Britain in the early to middle Seventies.
Noddy's gritty vocals, Dave Hill's powerful guitar work, Jimmy Lea's intense bass and violin playing, with Don Powell's thunderous support showed what a powerhouse Slade have become.
The audience had been singing and shouting for them from the moment that the support band left the stage. The atmosphere was like a football match with singing and chanting people swaying to and fro.
It did not take long for the local heroes to win over the audience with oldies such as 'Take Me Back 'Ome', 'Gudbuy T Jane' and newies like 'The Wheels Ain't Comin' Down' which proved that the quality of their writing is as good as ever it was.
After only 40 minutes they 'finished' with 'Get Down And Get With It' --- but there was still more to come.
They returned triumphantly with a further set of oldies, and by this time the audience was ecstatic.
The band stayed on stage for nearly as long again, and the sight of toilet rolls being shot at the audience from the stage, balloons falling from the roof, and Noddy Holder dressed as Santa Claus while singing 'Merry Christmas Everybody' took the chill away from a cold winter night and proved conclusively what great showmen Slade are.
JJO, Wolverhampton Express and Star, 8 December 1980
From the archive of Chris Selby
Slade in England © 2015