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The Birthday Party - Live 81-82
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The Birthday Party - Live 81-82

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Live 1981–82 is the second live album by Australian post-punk band The Birthday Party, released in August 1999 via Liberation Records.

Consisting of Nick Cave (vocals, saxophone), Mick Harvey (guitar, vocals, drums, keyboards), Tracy Pew (bass, vocals), Phill Calvert (drums), and Rowland S. Howard (guitar, vocals), The Birthday Party were formed during the group's years at Caulfield Grammar School, Melbourne, during the early seventies (with the exception of Howard who joined the group later). 

Greatly affected by the punk explosion of 1976, The Birthday Party began performing punk and proto-punk cover versions, such as "Blitzkrieg Bop" and "Gloria", as well as original songs. By the end of 1977, their set was dominated by fast original new wave material, such as "Sex Crimes" and "Masturbation Generation". The band's second guitarist, Rowland S. Howard, joined in 1978.

In 1980, The Birthday Party moved from Melbourne to London, where they were championed by broadcaster John Peel. Disillusioned by their stay in London, the band's sound and live shows became increasingly violent, and shortly after relocating to Berlin in 1983, the group broke up. 

Despite limited commercial success, The Birthday Party's influence has been far-reaching, and they have been called "one of the darkest and most challenging post-punk groups to emerge in the early '80s". The group's "bleak and noisy soundscapes," which drew irreverently on blues, free jazz, and rockabilly, provided the setting for vocalist Nick Cave's disturbing tales of violence and perversion, and their single "Release the Bats" was particularly influential on the emerging gothic scene.

Live 81-82 was recorded over three concerts: the 26th of November 1981 at The Venue in London; on the first of July 1982, at Aladin in Bremen; and on the 17th of September 1982, at Sporting in Athens; and was mastered by Dave Macquarie.


The Venue, London 26 November 1981:

A1. Junkyard
A2. A Dead Song
A3. The Dim Locator
A4. Zoo-Music-Girl
A5. Nick The Stripper

B1. Blast Off!
B2. Release The Bats
B3. Bully Bones
B4. King Ink
B5. (Sometimes) Please Heads Must Burn

Aladin, Bremen, Germany 1 July 1982:

C1. Big-Jesus-Trash-Can
C2. Dead Joe
C3. The Friend Catcher
C4. 6" Gold Blade
C5. Hamlet (Pow, Pow, Pow)

D1. She's Hit

The Sporting, Athens, Greece 17 September 1982:

D2. Funhouse


Release Year: 2016 (Reissue)

Originally released on  10 August 1999

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