– Wire – Live in Vienna – November 14, 1987 – ORF-Austria – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –
A much needed concert from Wire this weekend. Recorded in Vienna on November 14, 1987 (34 years ago tomorrow) by the Austrian radio network ORF.
I have always felt Wire were one of the truly pivotal bands of the 70s/early 80s. Why they weren’t household names still baffles me and why they are often referred to as a “cult” band is downright demeaning to a group whose point of view is as fresh in 2021 as it was in 1977 or 1987. Any new musician worth their chops should make listening to Wire a mandatory experience. There is so much to absorb, just from a purely musical standpoint.
That most of their material has been and is currently being reissued makes it now possible for an audience to discover them who haven’t heard them before, or have been otherwise distracted by the “shiny object” mainstream artists or who just wants to go exploring.
None of this is to intimate that Wire is one of those wildly underrated or overlooked bands – far from it. They’ve had a pronounced influence on a wide range of artists over the years – they are considered, in many circles, to be musician’s musicians.
There have been several personnel changes over the years as well as a few breakups. But the current edition of Wire has been going since 1999 with no sign of letting up. I have run several of their more recent concerts as a way of letting you know they’re still around and you should see them and you should avail yourself of any one or every one of their 18 releases.
This concert sounds great and even if it was over an hour it would still be way too short. But it’s a little under 50 minutes, and I suspect there is more, but this is all I have at the moment. Every note is precious.
I would urge you to crank this up and turn the phone off.
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