Spike and me went to see Lloyd Cole at Trinity Arts, Tunbridge Wells, last week. And, as you might expect from such a seasoned campaigner, a good time was had by all. I'd kind of lost track of his career over the past few years, but, as he helpfully reminded us: "To those of you who've not seen me in a while, this isn't a comeback; I never actually went away. I just got less prolific and less popular." (or words to that effect.)
He also reassured anyone who'd got the impression of him being a miserable bugger from looking at certain album sleeves that he's actually nothing like that in real life. Quite right, too - look up the word "personable" in the dictionary and you'll see the words 'Lloyd Cole' in the definition bit, probably.
As well as classic oldies (pop pickers) like Rattlesnakes, Are You Ready To Be Heartbroken? and Lost Weekend, there was plenty of newer stuff too, most of which I hadn't heard before, but all of which sounded just as good as the Commotions-era stuff. There were also cover versions of Tim Hardin songs and a Tom Waits impersonation that was as hilarious as it was uncannily accurate.
The one trouble I have nowadays when seeing solo performers with acoustic guitars is that it's all I can do to stop myself shouting "Streets of London!" inbetween songs in a Big Train "Ralph McTell" stylee:
I know, I know, incredibly childish. But that's me all over. Anyway, to sum up, Lloyd Cole is still officially brilliant, even if he didn't play Streets of London.
*The Silver Fox thing comes from a suggestion one of Lloyd's friends made to him about a possible nickname after he'd expressed his concerns about his increasingly greying hair. She noted that it's the path a lot of older gents go down and would make him sound more distinguished!
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