The UNDERTONES – ” Rockpalast 1981 “

Posted: October 17, 2021 in MUSIC
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The Undertones will open the 9th Rockpalast-Festival. The group was formed in 1976 in Londonderry, Northern Ireland. For the five band members, this seemed to be the best attempt to be able to stand the depressing life in their hometown. The early days of the Undertones were mainly filled with playing songs from well-known rock bands, then they slowly wrote their own texts and compositions.

In the mid ’70s, there was a movement in English rock music. All at once, it was no longer necessary to play perfectly whenever possible, nor to be able to appear on-stage only with a large technically- equipped set-up. To play live concerts was important, no matter how. It also wasn’t important whether one called himself a musician or tried to prove himself as a virtuoso instrument player. These differences also had some effects on the Undertones. The members of the group decided to become pros and to write only some of their songs.

In 1978, the Undertones released their first LP on one of the many labels that existed back then. ‘Teenage Kicks’ was a sales success. Now the group was well-known everywhere and regularly completed extended club tours, to which ever-increasing fans always came.

Today, the Undertones count amongst the most successful live groups in Great Britain. At concerts, the band presents a varied musical repertoire: For one, their stage appearance and the impressive voice of the singer, Feargel Sharkey and, for another, the way the group works the dense and imaginative arrangements. The Undertones don’t waste any time on-stage. The songs are short and have no solo side-trips. The performances are played straight to the point, without forgetting to communicate with the audience. As the Undertones see it, it is very important that the audience doesn’t come out short on fun and entertainment at their concerts.

In 1975, five friends from Northern Ireland got together as the band The Undertones in order to close up the gap between punk, pop, rock and rhythm and blues. Three years later, they were in Belfast and had a first record contract. With the LP ‘Positive Touch’ in 1981, the Undertones changed stylistically and experimented with string and wind sections. They closed a big tour through North America and Europe (including Rockpalast). After a pause, the LP ‘Sin of Pride’ appeared in 1983, which did not meet expectations. Disappointed, the Undertones gave a farewell concert on July 17th, 1983, in Dublin, and then dissolved the group.

‘Rockpalast’, Essen Grugahalle, Germany 17th October 1981

You’ve Got My Number/ Hypnotised/ His Good Looking Girlfriend/ Tearproof/ See That Girl/ Girls That Don’t Talk/ It’s Going To Happen!/ Jimmy Jimmy/ I Don’t Know/ More Songs About Chocolate & Girls/ Forever Paradise/ Beautiful Friend/ Julie Ocean/ You’re Welcome/ When Saturday Comes/ Jump Boys/ Teenage Kicks/ Get Over You/ Sigh & Explode/ My Perfect Cousin/ Get It On

This show was broadcast live on both television and radio throughout Europe.  The original broadcast featured an interview with the band twenty minutes after they came off stage.  The show has been broadcast on the WDR satellite channel in recent times, minus the interview at the end.

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