erasing clouds

Live Review: Dexy's Midnight Runners, The Pavilion, Glasgow, Scotland, 3rd November 2003

by anna battista

People in the audience instantly clap as the safety curtain raises to reveal Dexy's Midnight Runners in full form. For a never ending minute you can't hear anything except people clapping, whistling and shouting at the band. In a way the fervor of fans is well justified: we are witnessing the latest reincarnation of the Dexy's, put together to celebrate the release of their Best of album and perhaps to celebrate Kevin Rowland's new-found sanity.

After the deranged madness that pushed him to go on stage at the 1999 Reading festival dressed like a woman, in search of a solo career (though he found only booing thenů), Rowland seems to have found a new reason for living and, above all, for singing. "The Waltz" opens the show, Rowland sings in his best velvety voice (and in a new look created by Rowland and Soho tailor Mark Powell) helped by co-vocalist Pete Williams surrounded by the rest of the band, all clad in sharp suits. The hits follow one after another, from "Geno" to "Come On Eileen" or "Let's Make It Precious", plus a triumphant encore with "This Is What She's Like" that has all of the people in the audience standing up and dancing.

Put it like this, Rowland could have ended up in the hall of fame of the Pavilion, together with the other photos of pantomime actors, but tonight he and Dexy's didn't. Contrary to expectations they were flawless and played an infectious set.

Issue 17, November 2003

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Pics by Anna Battista