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London Hampton Court Palace
19th June 2012
by wendavey on 6th March 2013 14:16
Deptford's finest, Squeeze, may have their fortieth anniversary looming on the horizon but they continue to provide one of the most satisfying night's entertainment you could hope for. Squeeze have operated a revolving line-up for several decades and this current version sees Difford and Tilbrook (who has now ditched last winter's misjudged Grizzly Adams look for an unruly goatee the like of which was last seen sported by Geoffrey Bayldon in "Catweazle" circa 1971) reunited with former bassist John Bentley, and Tilbrook's Fluffers' band mates Simon Hanson and Stephen Large on drums and keyboards respectively.
The band opened with one of their earliest songs, 'Take Me I'm Yours' before deftly following up with 'If I Didn't Love You' from 1980's 'Argybargy' album, and 'In Quintessence' from 1981's 'East Side Story'. It took seven songs before the opening lines of 'Is That Love' encouraged the first dancers to leave their seats down the front and this was all the encouragement that was needed to get people on their feet and singing along for the remainder of the evening.
After a mid-section of 'Points Of View', 'Labelled With Love', 'Melody Motel', 'Heaven' and 'Bang Bang', came a stunning string of ten, solid gold classic tunes from the band's extensive back catalogue. Starting with 'Cool For Cats', the band continued with 'Up The Junction', 'Another Nail In My Heart', 'Goodbye Girl', 'Annie Get Your Gun', 'Hourglass', 'Pulling Mussels (From The Shell)', 'Slap and Tickle', 'Tempted', and, finally the set closing 'Black Coffee In Bed'.
It was an exhilarating forty minutes of music that would have been worth the ticket price alone, but it did demonstrate how difficult it must be to match the quality and success of such tunes when writing new material. But the proven Squeeze formula of providing a jukebox of hits on stage, and mixing it up with a strong back catalogue of popular fan favourites is continuing to serve them well.
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