courtesy of Tony Russell
updated 18 May 2010
updated 13 Feb 2012 - added photos and tickets
courtesy of Tony Russell
audio cdr - very good - from master - Sound 4 - 100min - DATm1 - tracks 23 - 28 Dec 01
video VCD - cable colour TV rushes - 8 songs good sound (source of various DVD’s including DVD with dubbed on audio recording)
DVDR - cable colour TV rushes - 4 songs (2 complete, 2 clips) plus fan interviews outside Hall
The second night at Asbury Park Convention Hall and a good master audience recording plus cable TV video rushes of 10+ songs. Arguably though the weakest of the 3 nights; less collective energy than the other nights, Mick is trying out unsuccessfully different guitars/sounds, Joe’s not especially inspired and it’s Terry’s 2nd night of his return and it shows! Nevertheless there are some strong performances and the video material is well worth having not least because there is so still little video of the band available with Terry in 1982.
Fricke’s review though of the gig for Sounds (link) is extremely positive; the best show he had seen them give. Explained perhaps by him being a Clash leaning journalist anyway, the band now being back in vogue in the UK music inkies and certainly the sound quality of the recordings is not great perhaps not giving the performance justice. But Fricke is highly positive too about Terry’s performance, saying he was already up to the mark, which is much harder to swallow given the aural evidence to the contrary!
The terrific live and after show party photos here are credited as being from the 30th but as the text says the party was on the last night at Asbury so these are almost certainly from the 31st.
A New York cable TV station filmed the gig on the 30th and interviewed fans outside the venue earlier in the day.
A little circulating DVD has a number of unedited interviews with Mick, Paul, Kosmo and Don at Electric Ladyland in November/December 1981. Baker makes a brief appearance at one point confirming the earlier date for this footage. The DVD also though includes a 10 minute section of interviews with fans and bemused passers by outside the Convention Center plus live footage of 2 complete songs and 2 short clips. Quality is of a VHS copy and mono sound.
The footage starts with a close up of the Convention Center sign and pans out to fans waiting outside. A number of fans were at the first gig the night before “they were excellent last night” The fans comments give the lie to the myth that The Clash’s political message went over the heads of their US fans. One fan with (some seriously dated Buggles sunglasses!) responded to the interviewer with “they made me wake up to a lot things that are happening in the world..for instance revolutions, nuclear arms race, individual rights, expressing your individuality” Someone behind adds “Goddamn human rights violations in South America!”
This group held up a ghetto blaster playing Sean Flynn and were they said definitely not Springsteen fans! Some bemused tourists were interviewed including a little boy who said his bird likes the Clash!
Another group of fans said they had been waiting outside for tickets since 10am that morning. One fan who was at Bonds says it was “our anniversary today one year ago we got chased away by the Police”. Another says “Old stuff was really punk but got their own style now, can’t classify them” Another “Political?” “Yeah!” in unison. Do you follow their political beliefs “Left wing. Yeah!” They were upset by Topper’s departure but one was not aware of the band’s 1st album sleeve joke at Terry’s expense saying; “they now got Tory Crimes the original drummer”!
The footage with time code now cuts to a 30 second clip of Joe at the end of Know Your Rights. An edit restarts with shots of fans stage side during the final parts of Clampdown with Joe’s adlibs. Both Clash City Rockers and Brand New Cadillac though are complete.
A widely circulating video of 8 mainly complete songs (see bold in set list and details in Gig section below) comes from the same cable TV rushes but with no time code and fully synchronised sound. It circulates in various DVD forms with different qualities of sound including one from Gerald Mann who has dubbed successfully the audience recording onto the video. They all though emanate from a VCD copy which has VHS copy quality video but the best sound. The VCD sound is better than the other source DVD sound and has decent clarity and range.
Unfortunately the master video source remains uncirculated and the VCD probably comes from the same source as the Stereovision Turin 1980 VCD, the best source still sadly too for this footage.
Audio recording sound quality
The master audience recording circulates and although not as good as the 31st May one is still of decent quality. It suffers from some distance to stage and a lack of range. Vocals are best, drums OK, bass is low in the mix and the guitar sound is rather thin lacking impact. It appears though to be complete.
Asbury Park Photos and blog
The audio recording begins with the Morricone intro then not for the last time in 1982 Joe announces “London Calling to the faraway towns” It has the intro variation played on the first night and then curiously a sound like a phone ringing on the tape! Joe sings with a strong committed voice but the performance lacks an edge especially as Mick’s lead guitar is too far back in the mix. Straight in next to Safe European Home; Terry’s drum attack rather ponderous at start but not a bad performance, Mick and Joe’s pumped up vocals are clear. The Asbury Park audience is again audibly very enthusiastic.
“Thank you this is Paul Simonon” Mick adds some good fills on Guns of Brixton certainly not a strong performance but taking into account only 5 days of rehearsals with Terry, the band pull it off. This is not The Clash at the best but it’s not a pale imitation either. Straight into Train In Vain (few seconds of tape dropouts);fine if unexceptional.
“Would you please say hello to Mr Terry Chimes on drums” and Terry thumps out the intro to Car Jamming; guitar heavy lacking some light and shade variation.
Joe shouts “Don’t you ever stop to get your car outta that gear uno dos tres go!”
and the band kick into Magnificent Seven. But after the big build up Terry and Mick cannot deliver the necessary musical punch and finesse. The lack of range in the recording prevents it being too enjoyable. “To guitar city” and Mick’s funky riff section is not bad it’s just this song has been performed so much better on their best performances in 81 and earlier in 82.
“Career Opportunities the ones that never knock!” shouts Joe and apart from Mick and Joe getting mixed up at the start its fine “Say down the road” and Joe’s favourite Junco Partner next with “friends up on Rykers Island”; OK but again lacks musicality.This is not a good Mick night, his playing generally lacks inspiration, is low in the mix and choice of guitar sound detracts not compliments. Joe does his best though on Know Your Rights and there’s short video clip at the end of the song.
“Kingdom was ransacked…” The band come in before he can finish his intro to Clampdown; an OK performance but which lacks excitement and punch. The video from the song starts with Joes’s adlibs and is of the audience at the front of the stage only. Joe adlibs “give me something I can dig my bunker with! With Strontium 90 hey 90 90! bones turn like ash and you don’t have cornflakes you have skinflakes! (video ends) Skinflakes and milk for babies and let there be drums” but there were none! Terry does his best but the comparisons with Topper are painfully evident.
Things improve after an OK Ghetto Defendant (and an edit) by a spirited Clash City Rockers. It’s complete on the video, the band sporting their Alex Michon designed stage gear, combat trousers and Paul his red beret. Joe does not get his rocking Mohawk haircut and dodgy Davy Crockett hat until the band head south!
After a long pause Joe introduces Spanish Bombs “In 1965 in this hall ? (then on the 8 track VCD source) on June 10 Brian Jones was standing here, Bill Wyman was standing there and Freddie Mercury was standing here! This is not a Bruce Springsteen number this is supposed to be poetry” [Joe made up the date -The Stones date at Asbury was 4th July 1966!] A good if not great performance; Mick’s lead accompaniment is suitably understated and it’s fascinating to see Joe in close up, eyes closed in concentration as he sings.
“How do you like the London fog outside? We especially imported 22 tons of fog. We thought we’d show those bands here like Styxx and Foreigner how to do it properly! [Cheers] This ones the manic funk” An edit on the video restarts now at the start of a very strong Radio Clash; the band even managing to stretch out and improvise effectively over the ending with Joe adlibbing “What is your calling sign, C..L.. A..S..H… came down to Asbury Park can’t find our way after dark with the fog and all “Joe focussed and wired.
Joe in Strummer Spanish next intros a fast, urgent and of course still fresh “Rockin’ The Casbah” Terry’s drumming sounds fine here but there’s no Topper live version to compare it to! A pause then Mick plays the start of Police on My Back; credit is due to Terry surely for learning the songs so quickly.
The video restarts with “This was an excellent display of breaking an E string in only 17 numbers.. back in the Garageland” A good performance ends the main set, the video footage though continuing with the backdrop of Bonds posters and then as Terry and Paul return to sing Armagideon Time with image of a Vietnam child. A smiling Strummer returns too but it’s a fairly uninspired performance, with Terry thumping away and there’s little by way of invention in Mick’s playing either. Joe jokes “ no hostess cooking tonight, little jelly babies“ Sounds better on the VCD than the audience tape.
The video footage continues, in semi darkness, Mick picks out a ‘straight’ intro to Somebody Got Murdered before the spotlight shines on him for his vocals. The video cuts out before the end but it’s a fine performance if unexceptional, Mick’s guitar sound here is clear and powerful. After a long pause, Terry starts the intro to Straight To Hell and the video restarts. The first quality live recording of the song and although Mick’s accompaniment is uninspired it’s fascinating to watch Joe’s animated face in close up as he sings in total concentration his bitterly poetic lyric.
As the band leave the stage the video continues until the band return for a final encore. Should I Stay or Should I Go though is poor with flat vocals and although Joe attacks his guitar with gusto Mick plays a discordant slide guitar style solo which is a mess his guitar sound completely wrong for this straight rock’n’roll song. Points for Mick’s innovation but certainly not the delivery!
The camera captures Joe hand on hips as Terry plays what is supposed to be the crescendo intro to I Fought The Law but his dismal effort just never gets there! Joe & Mick’s committed vocals try to add some energy to the performance but Mick’s guitar sound and Terry’s lame drumming mean this is one of the weakest performances of this song. The video ends as the band leave the stage and Joe says ‘thank you people, Adios, asta la vista!”
The audience shout for more, the recording captures the hugely enthusiastic atmosphere inside the Hall. The band return for a final encore with Jimmy Jazz.
Mick’s playing is much more effective here and he plays an inventive solo. It drops down to just Paul’s bass line at one point and Joe adlibs aplenty, name checking Cab Calloway but most is unclear. The recording and presumably the gig ends with an energetic Janie Jones.
Asbury Park Photos and blog
30 May gig review
30 May gig (2nd night of 3) reviewed
28 May New York Post
3/4 June - Unknown
Combat Rock Advert
Unknown US magazine cutting
Joe found - US Tour 'On'
NME May 1982 & US newspaper
Any further info / reviews