Squeeze live at the Brighton Centre - Review

Difford and Tilbrook overlooked by their younger selves and early incarnation of Squeeze
Difford and Tilbrook overlooked by their younger selves and early incarnation of Squeeze

After 40-plus years of oft-repeated kitchen-sink dramas and cherished slices of power-pop, Squeeze are a much-loved memory which lives and plays on.

On Saturday (October 26) a pleasantly full Brighton Centre hosted the band’s latest tour –The Difford and Tibrook Songbook 2019.

The show promised the hits and some rare, lesser known gems from their back catalogue and solo careers.

Founder members Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook have remained the creative force of the band throughout the past five decades, with the exception of a few years of band inactivity and solo work.

Flanked by a whopping great video screen and part of a band which has now swelled to seven-piece, the songwriting partners presided over a hit-heavy set, and, unsurprisingly, seemed fresher and at their best on the songs the lesser-known, lesser performed songs.

The best of these were Mumbo Jumbo (which Tilbrook described as ‘totally bonkers and full of adrenaline’), Someone Else’s Heart, and In Quintessance, all album tracks from East-Side Story, the 1981 album which remains their most critically lauded.

Elsewhere, King George Street and Big Beng from Cosi Fan Tutti Frutti sounded all the better without the heavy-handed mid-Eighties production.

The hits were as good as you remember, and there were plenty of them.

Labelled with Love still sounds like the perfect introduction to country and western music, via Deptford, and Black Coffee in Bed has been transformed into a footstomper quite unlike it’s original mournful recorded version.

A nostalgic night but a great reminder of the duo’s songwriting powers and back catalogue of pop gems.

By Steve Holloway