SQUEEZE: The Squeeze Songbook Tour Paramount Theatre Austin, TX Sept. 17

Squeeze are a British rock band that came to prominence in the United Kingdom during the new wave period of the late 1970s, and continued recording successfully in the 1980s and 1990s. They are known in the UK for their hit songs “Cool for Cats,” “Up the Junction,” “Slap and Tickle,” “Another Nail in My Heart,” “Pulling Mussels (From the Shell),” “Tempted,” “Labelled with Love,” “Black Coffee in Bed,” and “Hourglass.” The group formed in Deptford, London, in 1974, and first broke up in 1982. Squeeze then reformed in 1985, and disbanded again in 1999. The band reunited for tours through the United States and the United Kingdom in 2007. In 2010, they issued Spot the Difference, an album of newly recorded versions of older material. The band’s first album of all-new material since 1998, Cradle to the Grave, was released on October 2015, followed by another album, The Knowledge, in October 2017.

In 1982, my mother and brother bought me a Sony Walkman and I had only a few tapes to listen to, so my brother was taping music for years and I got some from him and started listening to stuff I had never heard before. Squeeze was on the tape with two songs back to back taped off the radio. The first was “Pulling Mussels (From The Shell),” and the second was “Another Nail In My Heart.” I instantly fell in love with the songs and when I heard Squeeze play “Pulling Mussels (From The Shell)” in concert, I got watery eyes, and I had tears coming down during “Another Nail In My Heart.” The band was tight, had a great time telling stories, doing sing-a-longs and just playing their hearts out for the packed house. Having the son of Glenn Tilbrook playing the drums was a great addition and made it feel like a get together with a bunch of friends. The acoustic set in the middle of the show was a nice mellow time, and when they played “Tempted” and had the crowd sing with them and played it mostly acoustic, the crowd was going crazy. Although they didn’t play it straight like the album version, it was given even more emotion this way. The crowd was up on their feet for the encore, singing and dancing the last few songs of the night and gave them a rousing round of applause.

X opened for Squeeze and covered a fair bit of their catalogue and played great, with lots of energy and had the crowd cheering. The show really got going when near the end of their set, they played a bunch of their punk songs and really got the crowd going.

The concert was probably one of the greatest moments of live music that I have witnessed and after 37 years of waiting, I was thrilled to have finally seen them and will cherish this forever. If you have the chance to see them live, go and have an amazing time that will put a smile on your face and joy in your heart.

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