Lloyd Cole - lead vocals, guitar; Neil Clark - lead guitar; Blair Cowan - keyboards; Lawrence Donegan - bass; Steve Irvine - drums
Lloyd Cole formed the Commotions while attending the University of Glasgow. Originally, the group was a large soul band complete with a horn section. By the early 1980s, however, as they were beginning to focus on Cole's original material, he stripped the band down to five pieces which is represented on the recording of this show. At the beginning of the show, made in Atlanta in April 1985, Cole tells the audience, "We don't have any singles released in America yet." Obviously hoping the crowd will get into the band, he leaps into a hot set of early Commotions songs.
As with their early albums, Cole had nothing to worry about as far as their performance was concerned. When it came to a heavy college radio audience, the first album, Rattlesnake, from which most of the songs in the set come from, was hailed as one of the best debuts by a British act during the 1980s.
Lloyd Cole and the Commotions spearheaded the "jangle-rock" guitar genre that Aztec Camera, The Connells and The Smiths helped popularize. His perfectly crafted pop songs were just right for the alternative post-punk movement of this era. And like many other acts that emerged from the genre, Cole built up a very enthusiastic, if cultish, audience, who have stayed with him ever since. Originally released on Geffen Records, he would stop making albums with the Commotions before disbanding the group in 1988. The three albums he made with them eventually became the property of Capitol Records when they signed Cole as a solo artist the following year.
Highlights of this show include "Perfect Skin," "Four Flights Up" "Rattlesnakes," "Speedboat" and the powerful "Forest Fire," which closes the show.