Saturday, September 6, 2014

STATUS QUO: The Frantic Four's Final Fling

Rating: Live
Label: earMUSIC/Edel 2014
Review by: Urban "Wally" Wallstrom

The Frantic Four's Final Fling? The final show of the final tour. Ever? Have we heard it all before? Yeah. It's merely been 30 years since Status Quo first decided to do their first farewell concert and tour (1984). The 12 bar boogie UK band was back on stage again in 1986. However, this is what most people regard as the proper line-up of the band with original drummer John Coghlan (he decided to leave the band just prior to their 20th anniversary in 1982), original bassist Alan Lancaster and the same ugly geezers upfront (Francis Rossi & Rick Parfitt).

In fact. The three of Coghlan, Lancaster, Rossi, started playing together in 1962 as The Spectres. They took on a second guitarist (Parfitt) in 1966 and changed the name to Status Quo, a byword for uncomplicated rock n roll and boogie for years and the rest is as they say history. Listening to this 2CD live recording from Dublin in April 2014 and it's quite easy to understand why people think of this as Ultimate Quo. It's loud, raw, and energetic boogie rock n roll with plenty of riffs and bags of attitude. Not a single note of the at times sappy melodies of the eighties, nineties, or any other era than the seventies for that matter.

If you came here looking for the same old standards and play list as always keep walking as you merely get "Down Down" and "Caroline" in the set. Instead it's tracks such as "Junior's Walkin", "Backwater", "Rain", or why not "Big Fat Mama" that shines through with flying colors. It's heavier than your poppy Quo era and it's definitely hard rock with stronger material than any Ted Nugent live album (well, they sort of belong to the same blues category of the 70s).

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