I had seen Alex Harvey previously at the Palladium when it was a great gig ranking in my top 5, this would have been in the late 70's or early 80's and then again at the Astoria when quite frankly I was disappointed, the only thing I can really remember about that gig was a woeful song about a whale, tis was a year or so before Alex had died.
First of the Mean Fiddler is a great venue for Rock Music, facing Centre Point in Charing Cross Road, you go downstairs into a pit area which is dark and dingy with a large stage at one end the mixing desk is set towards the back and you can get a good view from anywhere on the floor. There is a balcony that runs all around the top and I should think also gives a good view on the band. the only bad point is that you can only buy canned beer from the bar priced it gets a bit pricey so no real chance of getting pissed.
Dead on 8pm the band came on to the sound of some type of dance music, the first things I noticed was Chris GLENN wearing a pair of glasses with some kind of red aiming light on which flashed into the crowd and Zal with his face all painted white with black lines on the eyes. then on came Max MAXWELL who is now the lead singer and started with the immortal words, 'LET ME INTRODUCE TO MY BAND.............'. the band went into with gusto. They seemed to enjoy the show the band when through all of there classics with my favourites being ISOBEL GOUDIE, GIVE MY COMPLIMENTS TO THE CHEF and FAITH HEALER. They were joined at one stage by the lead singer of ALABAMHA 3 who sounded like a good ole country boy from the deep south but I'm told he is only from south of the Thames, he did two numbers one being THERE FRYING BIG WILLIE TONIGHT or something like that I can take or leave him. As for Max MAXWELL I was well impressed he didn't try to replace Alex but did his songs in his own way including FRAMED which he changed into how he joined the band.
The encore consisted of VAMBO, BOSTON TEA PARTY and DALILAH a great end to a great gig, the band were tight with Zal still pulling manic faces, the new singer good and my ears were still ringing on Monday. We were promised an interview with the band (we were late again )but despite the efforts of Maurice could only get a word with Ted who said 'THEY LOVED PLAYING THE KURSAAL IT WAS A GREAT ROCK N ROLL VENUE'
A great night with good company I think Alex would have been proud of his band
Review by Colin Egleton 07.12.05