Thursday, 30 July 2015

The Boomtown Rats - Belgian Review (translated)


"The Boomtown Rats" (TBR) is a British / Irish new wave band, around Garry Cott (lead guitar), Simon Crowe (drums), Johnnie Fingers (keys), Pete Briquette (bass) and Gerry Cott (guitar) in 1975 Dun Laoghaire, County Dublin, Ireland was established. The original name of the group was "The Nightlife Thugs". The name "Boomtown Rats" (a children's gang name) said they were in "Bound For Glory", the autobiography of Woody Guthrie. After their first performance, and the name change of "The Nightlife Thugs" to "The Boomtown Rats" singer left Garry Roberts, seen not agree, the band. Irish journalist / singer Bob Geldof would be the manager of the band, but he felt was a better singer than Garry Roberts, who was first. The band broke up in 1985 and separated in 1986. Geldof started a solo career. In 2013 there was a reunion of TBR without Bob Geldof, Johnnie Fingers and Gerry Cott.

In 1976 the band moved to London where she signed a contract with "Ensign Records. In 1977 their first single, "Lookin 'After No. 1" and their first self-titled studio album. The next album "A Tonic For The Troops" (1978) they had three hit singles, "Like clockwork", "She's So Modern" and "Rat Trap". "Rat Trap" was their first no. 1 hit single and the first (new wave) no. 1 hit song by an Irish band in the UK. The band had a worldwide hit in 1979 with "I Do not Like Mondays". The song was written nav a shooting by the 16-year-old Brenda Ann Spencer, who indicated that she had done it "because she did not like Mondays." The song appeared on their third album "The Fine Art Of Surfacing". However, the group knew this success with later singles like "Banana Republic" (1980) and "Never in a Million Years" not to continue.

In 1981, on the birthday of drummer Crowe, the day before they were to leave on a world tour, Gerry Cott leave disappointed and the band including reproachfully they were lazy, the TBR and going solo. Commencement 1982 brings TBR their fifth album "V Deep". The sale of the single "Never in A Million Years" is not a success. The album was first released in the States as EP under the name "The Boomtown Rats featuring Four Selections From V Deep". After this in 1983, "The Long Grass", but not immediately released, given no credit. This worked in 1984 or later. After their participation in "Band Aid" became a reworked version of "In The Long Grass" released in the States in 1985.

After "Band Aid" the group goes slowly. Geldof brings a solo album and Crowe Fingers and no longer want to stay with the band full time. They set up their own band "Gung Ho" on. In 1986, during "Self Aid ', the band enters in Dublin, Ireland, last time when TBR. Geldof worked solo, along with Pete Briquette. Garry Roberts businessman and runs the 'Guitar Workshop', with which he tries to make young people enthusiastic about music. After the split of "Gung Ho", Fingers was in Japan (successfully), producer and member of the Japanese band "Green Gate". Simon Crowe plays drums in "Jiggerypipery" band.

In 2008 forms Garry Roberts, Simon Crowe, Peter Barton (later Bob Bradbury) and Darren Beale "The Rats". They bring their favorite songs from the TBR TBR first three albums. In 2013 there will be a reunion of TBR and follow a UK and Ireland tour. For the tour is a "Best of" album released "Back To Boomtown: Rats Classic Hits."

Bob Geldof: "Playing again with the Rats and doing Those great songs again will be exciting afresh We were an amazing band and I just feel it's the right time to re-Rat, to go back to Boomtown for a visit.".

"The Boomtown Rats' as a lamp that burns as brightly and then goes out quietly. They scored from 1975 to 1982 with some fine albums, to then rather quickly disappear into nothingness. Apart from a few compilations, it is after their album "In The Long Grass" (1984) actually remained silent, until recently, a CD / DVD "The Boomtown Rats - Live In Germany '78" was released, with unissued archive material from 1978. For the German TV ("Der Musik Laden") are then in July / August, during their "Europe Tour 1978 for their debut album and their album" A Tonic For The Troops "to promote, studio recordings made.

The set list contains eight tracks (out of ten) of their self-titled debut album (tracks 1,2,3,5,7,9,12,13), plus two songs from their second album "A Tonic For The Troops (1978), "She's So Modern" and "Do not Believe What You Read". The other tracks are B-sides of singles ("(It Feels) So Strange," the hit single "Do The Rat" and "It's All The Rage"). These are live recordings, made in the studio and explain the applause and the reactions of the public, but that do not detract from the enthusiasm of TBR. Their performance is worthy of their reputation. On the DVD you'll see that Geldof as he jumps around on stage, clearly found inspiration in country podium delight Mick Jagger. Also note his eyes, eyes and facial expressions. The CD is not a complete 1: 1 copy of the DVD, but a shorter version, minus the two bonus tracks "Banana Republic" and "House On Fire", which were later recorded and added.

Also nice is a copy of the tour contract (the 'technical reader') which was added in the box. Details? Could pay in cash or with a check, how were the insurance premiums, how big the stage had to be, that at 12 o'clock tee, coffee and sandwiches should be, at 18h hot food, drinks (incl. 48 cans of beer), salads, fruit ... cutlery included and (now it some more R & R), a pint of tequila, Bacardi rum and whiskey. Further Details: The tour manager controls the guest lists and the band is entitled to thirty tickets. Now they usually want "a little more" ...

For older rockers and fans of the British new wave, thinking back with nostalgia these years, this is a unique opportunity from the comfort of the couch to come back to look for "The Boomtown Rats" and how it all began ... Meanwhile, "The Boomtown Rats," "Band Ais," Bob Geldof and ... almost as good as "history"!

Eric Schuurmans


“ Bob Geldof's moody charisma helped to give the band a distinct identity… "
“The Boomtown Rats” (TBR) is een Brits / Ierse new wave band, die rond Garry Cott (lead gitaar), Simon Crowe (drums), Johnnie Fingers (keys), Pete Briquette (bass) en Gerry Cott (gitaar) in 1975 in Dún Laoghaire, County Dublin, Ierland opgericht werd. De oorspronkelijk naam van de groep was “The Nightlife Thugs”. De naam “Boomtown Rats” (de naam van een kinderbende) vonden ze in “Bound For Glory”, de autobiografie van Woody Guthrie. Nadat hun éérste optreden en bij de naamverandering van "The Nightlife Thugs" naar “The Boomtown Rats”, verliet zanger Garry Roberts, gezien niet akkoord, de band. De Ierse journalist / zanger Bob Geldof zou de manager van de band worden, maar vond dat hij een betere zanger was dan Garry Roberts, die dit eerst was. De band ging in 1985 uit elkaar en in 1986 begon Geldof aan een solocarrière. In 2013 is er een reünie van TBR, zonder Bob Geldof, Johnnie Fingers en Gerry Cott.
In 1976 verhuist de band naar Londen waar ze een contract tekenen bij ‘Ensign Records’. In 1977 komt hun eerste single "Lookin' After No. 1" uit en hun eerste titelloze studio album. Met het volgende album “A Tonic For The Troops” (1978) hadden ze ook drie hit singles, "Like Clockwork", "She's So Modern" en "Rat Trap". “Rat Trap” was hun eerste nr. 1 hit single en de eerste (new wave) nr. 1 hit single van een Ierse band in de UK. De band had in 1979 een wereldhit met “I Don't Like Mondays”. Het nummer was geschreven n.a.v. een schietpartij door de 16-jarige Brenda Ann Spencer, die aangaf dat ze het had gedaan "omdat ze niet van maandagen hield". Het nummer verscheen op hun derde album “The Fine Art Of Surfacing”. De groep wist echter dit succes met latere singles als “Banana Republic” (1980) en “Never in a Million Years” niet te continueren.
In 1981 op de verjaardag van drummer Crowe, de dag voor dat ze op wereld tour zouden vertrekken, verlaat Gerry Cott teleurgesteld en de band o.a. verwijtend dat ze lui waren, de TBR en gaat solo verder. Aanvang 1982 brengt TBR hun vijfde album “V Deep” uit. De verkoop van de single "Never in A Million Years" wordt geen succes. Het album wordt eerst in de States uitgebracht als EP, onder de naam “The Boomtown Rats featuring Four Selections From V Deep”. Hierna wordt in 1983 “The Long Grass” opgenomen, maar niet onmiddellijk uitgebracht, gezien geen kredieten. Dit lukte later in 1984 wel. Na hun deelname aan “Band Aid” werd  in 1985 een herwerkte versie van “In the Long Grass” in de States uitgebracht.
Na “Band Aid” dooft de groep langzaam uit. Geldof brengt een solo album uit en Crowe en Fingers willen niet langer fulltime bij de band blijven. Zij richten een eigen band “Gung Ho” op. In 1986 tijdens ‘Self Aid’ treedt de band in Dublin, Ierland, een laatste keer op als TBR. Geldof werkte solo verder samen met Pete Briquette. Garry Roberts wordt zakenman en runt de ‘Guitar Workshop’, waarmee hij de jeugd tracht enthousiast te maken voor muziek. Na de split van “Gung Ho”, werd Fingers in Japan (met succes) producer en lid van de Japanse band “Greengate”. Simon Crowe drumt in de “Jiggerypipery” band.
In 2008 vormen Garry Roberts, Simon Crowe, Peter Barton (later Bob Bradbury) en Darren Beale "The Rats". Ze brengen hun favoriete TBR songs uit de drie eerste TBR albums. In 2013 komt er een reünie van TBR en volgt er een UK en Ierland tour. Voor de tour wordt er ook een "Best of" album uitgebracht “Back To Boomtown: Classic Rats Hits”.
Bob Geldof: "Playing again with the Rats and doing those great songs again will be exciting afresh. We were an amazing band and I just feel it's the right time to re-Rat, to go back to Boomtown for a visit."
“The Boomtown Rats” zijn als fakkel, die even fel brandt en daarna rustig uitdooft. Ze scoorden van 1975 tot 1982 met enkele prima albums, om daarna vrij snel in het niets te verdwijnen. Buiten enkele verzamelalbums, is het na hun album “In The Long Grass” (1984) eigenlijk stil gebleven, tot er recent een CD/DVD “The Boomtown Rats - Live In Germany ‘78” uitkwam, met nog niet uitgegeven archiefmateriaal uit 1978. Voor de Duitse TV (“Der Musikladen”) zijn toen in juli/augustus, tijdens hun ‘Europe Tour 1978’ voor hun debuut album en hun album “A Tonic For The Troops” te promoten, studio opnamen gemaakt.
Op de set list staan acht nummers (van de tien) van hun titelloze debuut album (tracks 1,2,3,5,7,9,12,13), aangevuld met twee nummers van hun tweede album “A Tonic For The Troops (1978), “She’s So Modern” en “Don’t Believe What You Read”. De overige tracks zijn B-sides van singles (”(It Feels) So Strange”, de hit single ”Do The Rat” en ”It’s All The Rage”). Het zijn live opnames, die in de studio gedaan zijn en die het applaus en de reacties van het publiek verklaren, maar die van de gedrevenheid van TBR niets afdoen. Hun optreden is hun naam en faam waard. Op de DVD zie je dat Geldof, als hij rondspringt op het podium, duidelijk zijn podium inspiratie vond bij landgenot Mick Jagger. Let ook op zijn blik, ogen en mimiek. De CD is geen volledige 1 op 1 copy van de DVD, maar een kortere versie, minus de twee bonus tracks “Banana Republic” en “House On Fire”, die later opgenomen en toegevoegd werden.
Ook aardig is een copy van het tour contract ( de ‘technical reader’) die in de box toegevoegd is. Details? Betalen kon in cash of met een check, hoeveel de verzekeringspremies bedroegen, hoe groot het podium moest zijn, dat er om 12u tee, koffie en broodjes moeten zijn, om 18u warm eten, drinken (incl. 48 blikken bier), salades, fruit… bestek inbegrepen en (nu wordt het wat meer R&R) een halve liter tequila, Bacardi rum en whisky. Verdere details: de tour manager regelt de gastenlijsten en de band heeft recht op dertig tickets. Nu willen ze meestal “nog wat meer”…

Voor de wat oudere rockers en fans van de Britse new wave, die met heimwee aan deze jaren terug denken, is dit een unieke kans om vanuit de luie zetel, nog eens terug te kunnen blikken naar “The Boomtown Rats” en hoe alles begon… Ondertussen zijn “The Boomtown Rats”, “Band Ais”, Bob Geldof en… al bijna zo goed als “geschiedenis”!

Eric Schuurmans

Album // DVD tracks: 1”Close As You’ll Ever Be”* - 2”Never Bite The Hand That Feeds You”* - 3”Neon Heart”* - 4”(It Feels) So Strange”*** - 5”Kicks”* - 6”She’s So Modern”** [xx] - 7”Joey’s On The Street Again”* - 8”Don’t Believe What You Read”** - 9”(She’s Gonna) Do You In”* - 10”Do The Rat”*** - 11”It’s All The Rage”*** - 12”Mary From The 4th Form”* - 13”Lookin’ After No. 1”* // bonus tracks 13“Banana Republic” - 14“House On Fire” 
All songs by TBR unless [noted] – From their albums ”The Boomtown Rats”* (1977), ”A Tonic For The Troops”** (1978) & singles***
Line-up 1975:
Garry Roberts: vocals
Bob Geldof: vocals
Gerry Cott: guitar, vocals
Pete Briquette: bass
Simon Crowe: drums
Johnnie Fingers: keys
Line-up 2013:
Bob Geldof: vocals
Pete Briquette: bass
Simon Crowe: drums
Garry Roberts: vocals
1977 : The Boomtown Rats
1978 : A Tonic For The Troops
1979 : The Fine Art Of Surfacing
1981 : Mondo Bongo
1982 : V Deep
1983 : Ratrospective - compilation
1984 : In The Long Grass
1987 : Greatest Hits - compilation
1994 : Loudmouth - compilation
2003 : The best Of The Boomtown Rats
2015 : ”Live In Germany ‘78” - CD/DVD


Live in Germany '78
DVD/CD - £14.99

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