A little publicized after-effect of COVID is how postponed lockdown gigs all come together in a big rush.
With four rescheduled (Sparks, Nick Mason, TFC and TIndersticks) plus one new (Delines) act all appearing over something like two weeks, I came ascloseasthis to not going to this gig.
Luckily, the guy I’d agreed to sell the ticket took so long to get back, I missed the cancellation deadline for my hotel and decided to brave my first big crowd in two years and two months
Like the the rest of the sell out crowd (1,500?) at Vicar Street, I’m so glad that I did.
Despite my never really bothering to explore their 25-odd official albums beyond a couple of best of, Sparks were absolutely brilliant.
Their 23-song set covered everything from their very first, Todd Rundgren-produced album as Half Nelson (Wonder Girl) all the way up to Drip Drip Drip (the closing All That)
Aside from the inevitable classics, Town and Heaven (in which, roared on by a delirious Dublin crowd, Ron did his weird Spotty Dog dance), highpoints came with a magnificent Music You Can Dance To and Lawnmower. The latter vying with Simple Minds Don’t You Forget about me and the Delfonics La-La-La-La means I Love You as the greatest La-La song ever.
For a man in his early 70s, Russ M’s voice still hits the high notes on 70s standbys such as Mother Earth with an ease few of his contemporaries can match (and fewer still would be foolish enough to attempt). Filling out what can on record come across as being a rather, thin synth sound were a stunning five-piece backing band.
Pretty sure that this was the first time Sparks have ever played Ireland. Given the way they played and the reception they got last night, they’ll be back. If I’m still around to go, that[‘s one gig ticket I won’t be trying to offload. Onwards and upwards to the opening night of Nick Mason and Saucerful of Secrets’ Echoes tour at Dublin Convention Centre this Weds night.