Leeds, University, 23 Mar 1988

29 Apr 1988
Leeds Student
Nigel Hackney
LUU Riley Smith Hall

For me John Martyn was entirely upstaged by Tanita Tikaram1 with her delicate and bitter 'love' songs and almost Melanie-like elocution. I wish I had it taped so that I could hear them all again. Contrary to popular opinion the only similarity between Tanita and Suzanne Vega was her sex and chosen instrument.

Mr Martyn seemed to suffer from an inability to get across a single word that he was singing; the man was obviously in great emotional turmoil, it's just a pity that we couldn't share it. The gig also did not benefit from the blind devotion of some members of the crowd. It was interesting to see that the people who cheered the loudest were the ones who talked the most during songs.

Having said this, I have not seen such guitar playing since Richard Thompson was last in Leeds, and he couldn't half strut that gut.

A sit-down gig in the Riley Smith Hall, whatever next?

Nigel Hackney

1 In print consequently misspelled Taniti.
This review was printed in Leeds Student of 29th April 1988, on page 15. The concert took place Wednesday 23rd March; it was to be last time John performed at Leeds Uni.