Residency - sixth of seven nights

Support acts included Theatre of Hate

cdr - v. good – Sound 4 – time 109.41min - master - tracks 30

Background (see also 18th October review)

After a 2 day break The Clash returned to the Lyceum’s stage for the penultimate night of their 7 day residency, and so thankfully did Derek Harris with his Sony ‘Professional’ first Walkman recorder! The last of Derek’s complete recordings and by standing closer to the PA stack at one side (see Derek’s account in the 18th October review) the sound quality is a significant notch better than his earlier recordings.

The performances are very strong throughout (although not as good as the exceptional 22nd) so if sound quality is the priority this is the Lyceum recording to seek out. Mick is less interested in playing lead guitar this night than the 22nd, adding many more of his effects sounds. There is plenty of evidence though here to again prove that The Clash at the Lyceum 81 were at the top of their musicianship and professionalism, still pushing the barriers into musically diverse styles but still very much able to deliver the sort of rock’n’roll to make the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end!

Venue (See 18th October review for details)

Derek’s master audience tape is the only recording in circulation. It is complete apart from a few gaps resulting from tape changeovers. Due to Derek’s position the sound quality is a significant step up on his 22nd recording; sound is less distant and fuller. Paul’s bass can at last be heard! (although it is not fully focussed), Joe’s vocals and guitar are up front and clear as is Topper’s drums. Only downside of the recording is by moving to the front and near one of the two PA stack’s the recording does not capture well Mick’s guitar which predominantly was mixed to the other stack. The result is his guitar can be heard clearly but it is in the background thus losing much of the Clash guitar “attack”.

The recording begins with the full range of the air raid intro sound effects The Clash used at the Lyceum; klaxons, sirens and then the “All Clear’”! With a “Good evening and welcome” from Joe the band launch into One More Time and the quality of the recording becomes apparent. Joe’s passionate vocals are upfront and the band produce a very strong performance, not extended but hard as nails.

Joe’s vocal performance is committed and enjoyable throughout but his voice does sound strained, which he acknowledges later in the encores.

An extended Broadway is a highlight, the recording revealing the detail in the arrangement. “Yes and Welcome to the Lyceum here, hope you can see and hear, this is called Know Your Rights” A good performance but one which lacks a cutting edge due to Mick’s guitar being too much in the background.  “To Hammersmith” shouts Joe and the band deliver a strong White Man In Hammersmith Palais.  Performances tonight are significantly better than the 21st (main set) but not as inspired as the 22nd. “What did I go down there for, yes what was it?”; rest of Joe’s adlibs over the ending are unclear.

Guitar swop time next for an excellent and extended Guns of Brixton. Mick hangs some lead guitar in the air over Topper’s and Joe’s drum and bass. Train In Vain is fine if unexceptional. Lack of lead guitar attack detracts from an otherwise strong Magnificent Seven. Joe adlibs  “What are you going to do with words, what did he say, time for a lecture now” and launches into the usual lyrics with great effect. “Sweat, sweat, sweat all in a day’s work now” Mick’s keener on his electronic effects tonight than playing his guitar adds his electronic bleeps.

“Right now we just gonna have a lunch break here – no we’re not!” Cheers as the intro to Clash City Rockers is recognised by the audience. An intense pumped up performance followed by “Ladies and Gentlemen, elevator goooooing up!”  Koka Kola is followed by Topper’s vocal on Ivan Meets GI Joe.

The bass lines on an inventive Junco Partner are clear and then after a seamless edit Joe announces “You’re all under arrest “ and the band launch into an inspired Julie’s Been Working For The Drug Squad. The sound is at its best quality now and the band sound like they’re enjoying playing this song again. Joe’s in great voice and adlibs “Walk tall man Henry, try to remember, always hold your head up like a man..” (presumably a reference to their friend locked up by operation Julie which inspired Joe’s lyrics)while Mick plays some great guitar behind him. An excellent performance ends with “Going down the Old Bailey”

“And now we bring you from the Conservative Party Conference the new national anthem!” the intro in particular to The Leader sounds great; the band again demonstrating their super-tight playing. Another highlight follows with “Hanoi, to Hanoi! “orders Joe, “Play that trash, play that Saigon pop, pop,POP!” Mick’s guitar intro to Charlie Don’t Surf has a touch of Hendrix’s Star Spangled Banner sound. 

Topper’s bass drum repeats and it’s into a very fine Radio Clash, at last moved from its position at the end of the set. Joe intro’s it well with “Now they say turn on, tune in and drop dead now I say turn on, tune in and wake up!”  

“Tom toms, now the sound of the tom toms “ instructs Joe and Topper thunders into I Fought The Law. Mick manages yet another variation on his guitar crescendo intro to Somebody Got Murdered.  “Murder” repeats Mick rather lamely over the ending but Toppers great drumming holds it altogether.

Instead of the usual London Calling next, Ghetto Defendant is inserted. There’s a drum intro from Topper then first Joe wails and then Paul wails on his harmonica! A good sounding recording to hear the lyric differences from the later Combat Rock version. Joe’s voice is breaking with wear but passionately sings his new lyrics which show his new more opaque ‘poetic’ approach to lyric writing.

A short pause then to cheers from the audience the band launch into a pumped up London Calling. Joe sings “at the top of the hour and after all this won’t you give me a flower” With a shouted “1-2, 1-2-3” its into the main set closer Clampdown. Mick is fired up singing the lyrics with Joe. On Joe’s adlibs on songs like the ending of Clampdown, Police & Thieves, Safe European Home, etc he appeared to rarely prepare anything in advance relying instead on the inspiration of the moment. When this came off it could be remarkable and really add to a performance, but here again as per recent nights the inspiration does not come. He starts under his breath with “and they want us to be free” he mumbles on but nothing comes, the band though rip it up impressively behind him.

The audience cheer the band back for the first encore which begins after Joe asks “Hello is anybody shouting for anything?” as per usual at the Lyceum with a pumped up Safe European Home. An excellent Washington Bullets with Joe (and Mick) in great vocal form unfortunately is interrupted up by a tape turnover edit 2/3rd ‘s in. Moreover the blank tape Derek now used was of inferior quality so there is here on a drop in high frequency quality particularly in the left channel; all making for a flatter less dynamic sound. After a lengthy instrumental extended ending it’s straight into Revolution Rock but it is a rather disappointing performance compared to the one on the 22nd, shorter and rather fizzles out at the end. Mick’s Stay Free next is fine but his lack of interest in his guitar tonight is evidenced by his minimal contribution over the ending. “Alright then this is a 1981 number written in 1902!” and the band launch into Career Opportunities; bringing the encore to an end on an adrenalin rush.

The second encore begins with another fine Armagideon Time with Joe (and Mick’s scream!) in fine vocal form. Joe adlibs  “I feel like something to eat, yummy, yummy, calculate it, subtract it. Divide, come and get it!” After a drum and bass section Joe comes up with “10-4 big daddy, 10-4 what is your 10-20? big buddy this is your 10.29 do you happen to have a hamburger!, lets fight for it!”

Next Joe introduces Futura’s, Graffiti Rap; “Ladies and Gentlemen will you please welcome Futura 2000 all the way from Jarvis City” “That’s New York” says Futura and launches into his assured rap and name checking NYC rappers. Again there’s little guitar contribution from Mick. 

After an edit Joe shouts “You’ll have to listen very quietly to me right now” presumably referring to his strained voice but he certainly does not hold back on a blistering Brand New Cadillac (although left channel HF loss and the lead guitar mix limits it’s effectiveness) An edit goes into Mick’s Should I Stay or Should I Go but again it’s not an inspired night for his playing. Sound dips a little more on a fine London’s Burning and then the concert ends on a high with Complete Control. It begins with a great drum fill intro and then a slowed down section till “ went mad” then the band storm it through. Mick and Joe are pumped up, Mick’s lead work is clear if in the background but Topper’s drums thunder high in the mix with Joe’s vocals. An “Adios” from Joe ends another very fine Lyceum concert and a very good recording. Cheers Derek!

First saw The Clash at the Lyceum, London around this time (1981), being only 14 at the time, it was one of the first gigs I'd ever been to but remains one of the best. Still remember the sheer power of Safe European Home (hairs are standing up back of my neck as I type this), Tommy Gun and London Calling.

Also then saw them several times in Brixton through Sandinista and Combat Rock - Straight to Hell what a song!!! Most bizarrely was The Clash busking on the steps of Leeds University Union (1984?) when they were following The Alarm around (crap band -who incidently I first saw supporting The Farmers Boys and they never should have got any higher up the bill!).

Incidently The Clash also had more than one drummer which is enough of a link to the GB's to legitimise this bit of reminiscing, besides which beats working!

C Gull


One More Time
Know your Rights
White Man in Ham Palais
Guns of Brixton
Train in Vain
Magnificent 7
Clash City Rockers
Koka Kola
Ivan Meets Gi Joe
Junco Partner
Julie’s been working for...
The Leader
Charlie Dont Surf
Radio Clash
I Fought the Law
Somebody Got Murdered
Ghetto Defendent
London Calling
Safe European Home
Washington Bullets
Revolution Rock
Stay Free
Career Opportunities
Armagideon Time
Grafiti Rap (Futura 2000)
Brand New Cadilac
Should I Stay or Should I Go
Londons Burning
Complete Control

Tour poster

City Limits magazine October 1981 article ahead of Lyceum concerts (October 18-26)
Clash of Symbols. Punks prophetswithout honour return from New York with an identity crises. Simon Firth regards them with curiosity...

Melody Maker - Page 1 only!
18th October gig review
anybody have further info?
The Clash and Cocktail Culture. Adam Sweeting, Robert Ellis & Jon Blackmore report on the Clash's week at the Lyceum

18th October NME gig review
The Clash Stimulin. The path of Joe Strummer is as we know, lined with well intentionedgolden heartederrors and the first of tonights was Stimulin whose sound ix was start to finish a disaster.

NME letter of complaint over review
Right Barney - Yes Yes Yes, well done Barney Hoskyns. Did you copy your write up from the one you did before for the 16 tons tour? I bet your feeling pround of your scabby knackered self...

18th October The Times gig review
Rock - The Clash - Lyceum - Pub 20 Oct. Apart from producing the best and most varied triple album of rock, Sandinista!; apart from developing a distictand romantic production stylewhich has already...

22nd October Evening Standad Lyceum review
Ad lib Special - What the Clash won't do for mobey. John Blake on the angry young men who shun the big time. Like their contemporaries, The Police, The Clash could have become millionaires by now...

Lyceum Bootleggers
Excluding the Hits source which was likely taped specially by the Bootleggers, all the lyceum tapes not made by Derek were taped by the "bruce curtis" gang for sale on the street. my mate "M" taped 60 minutes of the 1st night from the balcony but it sounded so distant he wiped it, peoples conversations were drowning out the quiet songs like broadway. Tim Bucknall



full size photos available at




























Photos more...

Paul - lyceum
clash - lyceum
joe - lyceum
joe topper - lyceum
mick joe - lyceum
mick joe 2 - lyceum
paul topper - lyceum
simonon precision ba#10009

Any further info / reviews

Oct 5 Apollo, Manchester
Oct 6 Apollo, Manchester
Oct 7 Apollo, Glasgow, Scotland
Oct 8 Apollo, Glasgow, Scotland
Oct 10 Bridlington Spa, Royal Hall
this is a definate date from ticket stub. Theatre of Hate were support

As a hardcore original punk rocker  at this time I was really off the Clash - I wasn't into their new 'funk' sound and was highly disappointed with London Calling.  But some guys at school were going so asked me to come along so I decided to go.  I told our Physical Education teacher at school about it and he said he would see us there! Yeah right!
We arrived and the queue at the Spa was massive and went round the corner.  So, as typical 15 year school kid rebels we headed to the nearest pub  and who should be in there ... my teacher!!  And he bought us all a pint!!!  Top bloke!
So, as the queue got bigger and the doors opened we ran and pushed to the front and I was the second one into the hall and ran immediately to the front of the stage where Joe stood.
The first band to come on were Theatre of Hate who were fantastic.  Then after what seemed the longest interval ever - probably due tot he fact i was holding my bladder whic was due to burst due to all the quick pints I had downed earlier - the war barriers on the stage started flashing and sirens blasting.  Then they came on!  Joe looked amazing in his white sleeveless shirt, white pants with red pinstripe down the side and his doctor marten soled pointed brothel creepers.  Afetr two or three songs my bladder gave waya nd I pissed on the stage and on the leg of the girl next to me!!  She wasn't happy but no way was I gonna lose my prime position to go to the bathroom.
The gig proved I was wrong in my opinion of the band - they were fantastic!  But I remember saying afterwards that I thought TofH were much better!!
Towards the end of the gig Joe Strummer leant forward off the stage and asked me the time to see if they could fit in some extra encoures!!  Top bloke! That was not the last time I spoke with Joe Strummer ...

Oct 11? Lyceum, Sheffield

Sheffield Lyceum 11 Oct 1981 sunday .can confirm this.i went to bridlington on the sat and got in at sheffield on the sunday for free,bouncer let me and girlfriend in. nudger

Oct 12 Royal Court, Liverpool
Oct 15 Colisseum, Saint Austell
Oct 18 Lyceum Ballroom, London
Oct 19 Lyceum Ballroom, London
Oct 20 Lyceum Ballroom, London
Oct 21 Lyceum Ballroom, London
Oct 22 Lyceum Ballroom, London
Oct 25 Lyceum Ballroom, London
Oct 26 Lyceum Ballroom, London