The Chameleons UK

Live at the Gallery Club, Manchester, 1982

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To say that Chameleons fans generally come across as obsessive completists is...actually quite correct, which explains the existence of this disc. Originally Gallery Club only came out on video, but the demand for a formal audio release of the gig resulted in a not-bad snapshot of a young band already making a distinct name for itself. Lever had by now joined on drums, stabilizing the classic line-up and bringing his near-perfect ability to play equally subtle, complex patterns and full on rock drive with him. The mix on this disc is unfortunately off, with Burgess' voice up high and much of the music far too low at points. Still, if you want to argue both the band's ability to pull off their amazing songs live and to do so with a grace and a power nearly unique to them, more evidence like this never hurts. The set selection itself offers one great song after another from the many early singles tracks and the following year's debut Script of the Bridge, along with the hard-to-find "Things I Wish I'd Said." Sure, it's for the completists mostly - in otherwards, pretty much anyone who loves the band to start with.

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