The Smiths live at Salford University on the 20th of July 1986, playing The Queen Is Dead
"Memories of the night ...
This is Paul's video. He was the first to get a camcorder ... a Sony one, and having tried it out at Glastonbury earlier that summer, he was ready to try it on a Smiths show. Not sure why he didn't try it at any of the previous venues ... probably thought security would be too tight ... but decided to try it on the last date of this leg of the tour. Its funny ... but I have a much hazier memory of most of the 86 shows than I do of the 83-85 shows I went to. Maybe the traveling was becoming much more commonplace.
Anyway ... Paul stuffed the camera down the front of his trousers, which was quite some feat given the size of the cameras in those days. There wasn't much security, so he had no problems getting it in, and went straight up to the balcony. I was doing the audio recording, so I was downstairs. I recorded the audio about 20 feet from the stacks on the right hand side of the hall. It was recorded using my Sony Professional Walkman with Sony EMC-929LT Mic onto Metal tape. I would occasionally glance up at the balcony and I could see him filming away. I also spotted Angie Marr filming with a camcorder from the soundboard. Paul said she wasn't filming everything, just bits and pieces.
The show itself was one of the best the Smiths ever played. The day before (G-Mex) had been a bit disappointing ... and it wasn't really 'a smiths gig'. But this was a real hometown show (Salford not being 'in' Manchester, as Mark E Smith is always pointing out, to anyone who will listen) and everyone was up for a great time. As soon as Panic started everyone in the crowd was jumping up and down. You could feel the floor bounce in time. And it didn't really ever calm down. There was obviously pandemonium down the front, and at some point the stage actually collapsed and they had to stop the show for a few minutes. When they restarted the front row were almost on the stage, and Johnny and Andy eventually retreated to the drum riser. It's not altogether clear what's happening on the video, but at some point you'll notice that the crowd seem almost to be on stage. This made stage invading a little easier, and by the end the stage was almost flooded with fans. A fabulous night.
This is not taken from Paul's Video8 master ... it's a transfer from a copy he made me onto Hi-Grade VHS tape. However, I don't think there were many copy actually made from Paul's master. Most of the copies we sold at the stall and all the copies I subsequently traded would have been made from my VHS copy, or a similar copy he made for himself. As a result, I suspect this will be better than almost all the other copies out there.
I spoke with Paul about the master last year. He's not put it onto DVD yet, and doesn't have anything to transfer it. He said he tried playing the tape a while ago, and said it wasn't in good condition. He's in Australia these days, so maybe the climate there isn't too healthy for 20 year old video tapes. Anyway ... it looks like this is probably the best source available."
More chance of M being Pope elect than Central showcasing the beauty and power of The Smiths. Reputed to be one of the loudest & frenzied concerts of their lifetime. Paul Dundon was the cataloguer of The Smiths' vision & sound. Nostalgia truly is sorrow's native son.exciting stuff! this is what Central should be posting.
American punk is pretty bad and Black Flag is the worst of it, tho I really hesitate to call them punk. Henry is just jealous he's never been in a good band and he is immeasurably stupid.