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Rezillos - Liquid Room, Edinburgh, 11/12/2015

  by John Clarkson

published: 5 / 2 / 2016

Rezillos - Liquid Room, Edinburgh, 11/12/2015


John Clarkson at an over-packed Liquid Rooms in Edinburgh watches 70's punks the Rezillos, back with 'Zero', their first album in thirty-seven years, play an excellent set

There is a lot wrong tonight. The sound is often distorted. It may be clearer in the centre of the room. Those fans down the front are obviously enjoying themselves, but around the sides, cranked up too loud, it is sometimes blurred, only Angel Paterson's drums pulling through a sludge of noise and Eugene Reynolds' guitar at points particularly suffering. For an inexplicable reason as well the Liquid Rooms have shut their upstairs balcony, and, with popular hometown heroes the Rezillos playing their first Edinburgh show in a year and a half, the downstairs basement is uncomfortably crammed. And then there is the set list. It is blown up and printed on two huge pieces of paper which hang down on both the right and left side of the stage, visible to all, and effectively killing all suspense and anticipation of what is to come. Yet, for all this, one can't fault the Rezillos. They are superb. Since first forming in 1976, and even with a twenty-three year gap in the middle from 1978 to 2001, the Rezillos have always lived within their own vision, throwing a hybrid of influences - rock and roll, 60's girl groups, retro sci-fi, comic book and B-movie obsessions and 70's punk -into a melting pot to create their own unusual world. 'Zero', their new album and first in thirty-seven years since their seminal debut 'Can't Stand The Rezillos' , may be more grounded in reality and politically-edged than their past 1970's catalogue. Tracks from it, such as 'Welcome to the Groovy Room', 'Sorry About Tomorrow' and Life's a Bitch', however, have a similar abrasive bounciness and slot in well tonight alongside such classsics as 'Flying Saucer Attack', 'Destination Venus', '(My Baby Does) Good Sculptures' and 'Top of the Pops'. Front man and woman Reynolds and Fay Fife's harmonies are as razor sharp as ever, his mocking sneer combining well with her trademark foghorn vocals. Even the issue with the set list they turn to their advantage. "What's next?" bellows Reynolds at the crowd at one point, jabbing his finger at one of the two large pieces of paper. Later on he bluffs, "We printed them both off from the same computer but they don't seem to be the same." Even amidst this stuffy, over-rammed venue, in which sight lines are sometmes difficult, the Rezillos - Fife in a pink and grey leather dress; Reynolds in a long, blue battle coat; tin-helmeted lead guitarist Jim Brady an impish presence at one side of the stage - are an exhilarating presence both musically an visually. They save the very best to last a stunning version of Ike and Tina Turner's 'River Deep, Mountain High', which finds Fife on her knees on the floor, face pressed inches from the front row of the audience, and frequent Rezillos' set closer, the short, fiery 'Someone's Gonna Get Their Head Kicked In Tonight'. Tonight has been a fine and polished show from an ever excellent, entertaining act, but, with a little more care and foresight largely from the venue, this could have been one of the live highlights of the year.

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Rezillos - Liquid Room, Edinburgh, 11/12/2015

Rezillos - Liquid Room, Edinburgh, 11/12/2015

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Interview (2015)
Rezillos - Interview
Eugene Reynolds and Fay Fife from Scottish punk legends the Rezillos speak to John Clarkson about 'Zero'. their first album in thirty seven years
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