Allentown Morning Call, April 13, 1979

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Elvis Costello rock concert takes
crowd of 3,000 at Lehigh U. by storm

Len Righi

Elvis Costello's "Armed Funk Tour" took a capacity crowd of 3,000 by storm at Lehigh University last night.

Costello, clad in a silver jacket, gold-print shirt and dark pants and his band, the Attractions, were greeted with a standing ovation as they opened with a rousing rocker, "I Stand Accused," a new song.

Costello then showcased three cuts from his new album, Armed Forces — "Goon Squad," "Two Little Hitlers," a song about competitive friendship, and an excellent performance of "Oliver's Army."

He dedicated the latter song to all "the redcoats around here." "Oliver's Army" is an angry song about imperialism and is critical of the militaristic-minded. Costello reportedly wrote the song after a trip to Northern Ireland.

Other high points of the evening included a frenetic "(I Don't Want To Go To) Chelsea," and "The Beat." Both are from his second album This Year's Model.

Drummer Pete Thomas had a chance to shine on "Green Shirt," making his trap set sound like machine gun fire.

If there was one fault with the show it was the sound system which was bottom heavy, sometimes making Costello's vocals impossible to understand.

Ironically, this wasn't much of a problem until Costello performed new material, such as "High Fidelity," which he has been introducing on this tour.

Another problem plagued the opening act, The Rubinoos, a Berkeley, California-based pop quartet.

Lead vocalist Jon Rubin came down with a hoarse throat yesterday. This forced the Rubinoos into substantially changing their set since much of their material depends on strong harmonizing.

The Rubinoos began their set with "Rockin in the Jungle," a '50s song by The Externals and sung a cappella. Next they performed "Arcade Queen," a good-timey pop rock tune with a nice guitar fill by Tommy Dunbar.

The group then interspersed instrumentals including the Tornadoes "Telstar" and "Saw Creek," originally performed by Doc Watson to give Rubin's voice an occasional rest.

However, the Rubinoos did perform a more than adequate version of the Beatles "Please Please Me," and their own "Rock 'n' Roll is Dead," and the appreciative crowd called them back for an encore.

Tags: Grace HallLehigh UniversityBethlehem, PAThe AttractionsThe RubinoosArmed Funk TourI Stand AccusedArmed ForcesGoon SquadTwo Little HitlersOliver's ArmyNorthern Ireland(I Don't Want To Go To) ChelseaThe BeatThis Year's ModelPete ThomasGreen ShirtHigh FidelityThe BeatlesPlease Please Me


The Morning Call, April 13, 1979

Len Righi reviews Elvis Costello & The Attractions and opening act The Rubinoos, Thursday, April 12, 1979, Grace Hall, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.


1979-04-13 Allentown Morning Call page B3 clipping 01.jpg

Page scan.
1979-04-13 Allentown Morning Call page B3.jpg


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