June 4, 2013 – 5:05 am

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

London 2009 [no label, 1CD]

Live at the Royal Albert Hall, London, UK; April 8, 2009. Excellent digital radio broadcast (BBC Radio 2).

In 2009, ABC performed their 1982 debut album, The Lexicon Of Love, at the Royal Albert Hall in London, accompanied by the BBC Concert Orchestra, and conducted by arranger and composer Anne Dudley. They were joined on stage by album producer Trevor Horn. The Lexicon Of Love was again performed live in its entirety on December 18, 2012 at Theatre Royal Drury Lane. This marked the 30th anniversary of the album’s release and once again featured conductor Anne Dudley, who performed with the Southbank Sinfonia Orchestra. - wikipedia

Those who had missed out when the album was first released in 1982 and are wondering what the album is about, this is what David Fricke wrote in Rolling Stone magazine then:

There are a million ways to say “I love you” in pop music, and Martin Fry, the singer and leader of ABC, has managed to cram many of them onto this dazzling debut album. Fry, who wears his heart on his silk shirt sleeve like a giant diamond cuff link, flashes a Phil Spector-like armada of horns, synthesizers, strings, percussion and backup sirens as he compiles a pumping disco dictionary of sordid B-movie romantic maneuvers and smug sexual wordplay.

The heartbreaking turns and wicked verbal jousting that characterize the lyrics (“With your heart on parade and your heart on parole/I hope you find a sucker to buy that mink stole,” he sings in “Valentine’s Day”) may seem like soap opera fare. Yet Fry’s vocal playacting – broad gestures à la David Bowie fringed with Bryan Ferry’s aching tremolo – and the intricate yet remarkably fluid arrangements turn them into a winning combination of Gamble-Huff R&B glitz and martial funkadelic guts.

ABC’s recent British hit single, “Poison Arrow,” is typical of the songs here: a dramatically pleading chorus and a nimble bass line are elevated to the level of High Pop with the strategic deployment of a smoky soprano sax, an oriental marimba figure and a synthesized drum roll that explodes in Fry’s face as his girl brutally cuts him down. Producer Trevor Horn (formerly of the Buggles and Yes) orchestrates these devilish touches into a series of snowballing climaxes braked only by the Bowiemeets-Henry Mancini sweep of the candlelight ballad “All of My Heart.”

Martin Fry’s fixation on the language of love and the look of his songs suggests that this album doesn’t come entirely from the heart. But the hydraulic pump and radiant glitz of the The Lexicon of Love are guaranteed to leave you swooning in spite of yourself. If not in Fry’s tears, then certainly in your own dance-floor sweat.

Thanks to dfb0208 for recording the show and sharing it at Dime.

Digital radio broadcast (192kbps 48000Hz MP2) > Freecom USB DVB-T receiver > TMPGEnc MPEG Editor

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (192 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Please Do Not Hammer The Links. Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. The tracks should still be around. Please try again later. Kindly email us at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

Track 01. interview with Martin Fry (11.2MB)
Track 02. Show Me (6.5MB)
Track 03. Poison Arrow (5.6MB)
Track 04. Many Happy Returns (7.4MB)
Track 05. Tears Are Not Enough (5.7MB)
Track 06. Valentine’s Day (6.3MB)
Track 07. The Look of Love (6.4MB)
Track 08. Date Stamp (6.6MB)
Track 09. 4 Ever 2 Gether (8.8MB)
Track 10. All Of My Heart (7.6MB)
Track 11. The Look of Love (reprise) (2.1MB)
Track 12. The Look of Love (with Trevor Horn) (7.5MB)

Click here to order Lexicon Of Love.

+ + + + +
+ + + + +

Click here for more shows that are still open for sharing.

Click here for closed shows.
(Readers can email us a request to reopen closed shows.)

  1. 16 Responses to “ABC - LONDON 2009”

  2. Absolutely brilliant. Perfect pop, never bettered.

    By skyintheair...waves on Jun 4, 2013

  3. ABC represents the absolute nadir of pop, during the worst era ever for pop music. Everything is posing, image, and emptiness. If every ABC album just miraculously disappeared, we would not have lost a thing. If you prefer your pop to be vacuous, become a rabid ABC fan.

    By Lighnin' Popkins on Jun 4, 2013

  4. a terrible thing to be a child of the 80`/90`s and have to claim classic rock from that era as what you cut your teeth on.
    gives me the shivers just to think of it

    By sluggo on Jun 5, 2013

  5. everybody wang chung tonight!!

    By barth on Jun 5, 2013

  6. everybody wang chung tonight!!

    is it even legal???

    By sluggo on Jun 5, 2013

  7. Wow…the hate is most impressive. Their album Beauty Stab is brilliant…unfortunately their fans rejected it immediately. Well worth checking out. Thanks for sharing, BigO

    By DanC on Jun 5, 2013


    By rubberfinger on Jun 6, 2013

  9. Get thee behind me Satan and his disciples. Your words do sometimes make me chuckle though. It is good to be silly sometimes just to get a reaction. Keep the inner child alive fellows.

    But really, Lexicon Of Love was a brilliant and well received LP. Poison Arrow, Look Of Love, Date Stamp, Show Me, Many Happy Returns….

    I recommend Skyscraping CD. It is just as enjoyable as the 1st LP.

    By MIKE ROTCHERTZ on Jun 6, 2013

  10. great stuff for children of the 80’s/ABC is one of the classics of the era

    By Bwonk on Jun 6, 2013

  11. Beauty Stab, an unheralded masterpiece.

    By rap on Jun 7, 2013

  12. Great band, and their first UK tour in 1982, with the string section, was amazing.

    By Martin Fry's Greasy Bryan Ferry Perry-Boy Hair on Jun 7, 2013

  13. pop music for poofters

    By snakebelly on Jun 8, 2013

  14. snakebelly

    a.k.a. earthworm,lol

    By Bwonk on Jun 9, 2013

  15. What is a poofter?

    By Mike Rotchertz on Jun 19, 2013

  16. drummer of devo gone -

    By darth on Jun 26, 2013

  17. Brilliant, was looking a long time for this one. thanx

    By adriaan on Sep 12, 2013

Post a Comment