Prefab Sprout as we head into the weekend. A band that got started in 1978 and are still releasing material today. Although the lineup has changed and there are periods of relative inactivity, Prefab Sprout are still an entity, almost 40 years after getting started.
Formed initially by brothers Paddy and Martin McAloon and joined by Wendy Smith as backing vocalist, Neil Conti as drummer and Thomas Dolby as Producer. Prefab Sprout had their biggest period of success right around the time of this concert; in fact the mid-80s were a watershed period for the band, with a string of hit singles as well as critically acclaimed albums, referred to in the press as “perfect Pop masterpieces”.
Despite their successes (and there have been many), there is still the aura of the “cult band” hanging over them. Many critics have considered them underrated, but that hasn’t prevented the band from turning out an impressive catalog of material over the years.
This concert, recorded at Reading University on November 16,1985 for the BBC Radio 1 series, In Concert, catches the band in top form. With emphasis on New Wave, Sophisti-Pop and Jazz Pop, Prefab Sprout turn in a one hour concert that perfectly illustrates what made them so popular, not only with audiences but with other musicians. They have had a reputation of being a musicians musicians band, with songwriter Paddy McAloon cited by critics as one of “the great songwriters of his era” – and Prefab Sprout have been hailed as “One of the most beloved British Pop bands of the 80s and 90s”.
Maybe you aren’t familiar with them – or maybe you are and haven’t heard them in a while. In either case, have a listen and dive into the 80s for the next 60 minutes. Can’t hurt. Not one bit.