Live At Leeds – Cacophony SKELP 001

1 Jul 1987
Q
Andy Kershaw
 
JOHN MARTYN

Live At Leeds
CACOPHONY SKELP 001 LP

A previously mail-order only LP recorded live at Leeds University in 19761, in the days when students sprawled on the floor to take in a concert. Many took along their own cushions. During this gig, possibly a herbally inspired performance, the audience barely makes a sound and is probably well stoned too. Accompanied by Danny Thompson on bass, and drummer John Stevens, John Martyn is at his most eccentric and experimental. With his box of distortion tricks he fires some pretty astral guitar across the drowsy bass and listless drums, spraying the undergraduates with shattered chords and vapour trails of echo and reverb. When he sings it's hard to tell what he's growling on about but that's half the appeal of his slumberous post-coital crooning. He could belch on this record and it would be soulful. Eleven years on Live At Leeds still sounds like nothing else. * * * *
Andy Kershaw

muffnotes:
1 Nope. Some tapes were recorded 13 February 1975 at Leeds University, other at a London concert. The sleeve says October 1975, by the way.

Picture of the article kindly provided by John Neil Munro

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