Scala Cinema, London (Decenber 20 1979)

Running length
12 tracks
Running time


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    Track     Duration Listeners
1 Tuning 1 1:57 888
2 Paper Hats 6:01 32,636
3 Horizontal Hold 6:56 26,042
4 Triumph 3:44 26,186
5 Hi Baku Shyo 7:27 14,827
6 Makeshift Swahili 4:12 24,419
7 The Fall of Saigon 5:10 19,421
8 Music Like Escaping Gas 5:31 13,940
9 A New Kind of Water 4:10 24,221
10 Tuning 2 1:47 863
11 Twilight Furniture 4:01 15,553
12 Health and Efficiency 6:19 7,583

About this album

This is a bootleg ‘off the desk’ recording (though probably still only onto a cassette machine) of a gig This Heat did at the old Scala Cinema in Tottenham Street, London. NOT the Kings Cross Scala, which the earlier cinema moved to. Importantly, the old ‘Charlotte St’ venue was open all night on Friday and Saturday (for £3!) and had a large bar/café as well as the cinema and its wide, thin stage. I used to be the projectionist there, and saw this concert. Trivia? for the whole gig, the band was (at their own request, once we’d sorted out that standing in front of a cinema projector wouldn’t cause epilepsy, etc) submerged in an out of focus (just…) upside down and backwards projection of Roger Corman’s Vincent Price thriller, ‘Fall of the House of Usher’… very purply… and an intriguing mix of the random and the (almost) figurative.
The concert was stunning, and with the Scala’s extremely compressed and LOUD acoustics everyone was deafened. This is what leads me to believe the feed must have come through the sound desk, which was operated that night (as it frequently was for This Heat) by Peter Bullen, brother of guitarist Charles Bullen. The closing track ‘Health & Efficiency’ uses tape loops quite a lot, and the finale was when the band left the stage but the music carried on playing. One of the best concerts I have ever seen, and a really excellent record, clear and dynamic. I believe its ‘semi-unofficial status’ may get an official release, as the ‘Live in Krefeld’ bootleg did.

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