Television at Vicar Street

The ‘lap of honour’ gig remains a huge draw. Television have not released an album for 20 years, and even before that released 3 albums in 15 years. Original member Richard Lloyd is no longer with the band, so his guitar duties fall to new recruit, relative whippersnapper Jimmy Rip.

Katie Kim was an odd choice of support. She is an intense, almost precious performer, accompanied only by her voice, guitar and a chronic addiction to a loop pedal. Her songs were a little lost on a crowd who were here for guitar skills.

Church bells prefaced the clean guitars of opening number Glory, quickly followed by Elevation. Although Tom Verlaine is by no means a strong singer, his and Rip’s guitar lines sounded note-perfect. Playing most of their classic Marquee Moon album, the guitar combinations were something to behold: extended guitar playing that never descended into dull fretwankery but remained compelling right through, despite lengthy pauses between songs to retune.

The highpoint was of course, Marquee Moon itself, which stimulated an outbreak of air guitar over ten glorious minutes. The song is a perfect template for some downright fancy guitar playing. The aforementioned Jimmy Rip ensured nobody missed Richard Lloyd. After a brief encore they finished with See No Evil. A set heavy on old favourites to be sure, it never descended into sheer nostalgia. The gig was purely about the music, and some class musicianship.

Killian Laher

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