The Garage, North London, 1996

Having been at a very impressive gig a couple of weeks ago of Deborah, Willy and their band, I did a Net-search on ‘Deborah Conway’ and found you. Thought you might like a brief precis of the night….
The place was The Garage in Highbury, north London, a small yet intimate venue. One which does not afford the luxury of a back stage door to avoid the hordes of fans. But whilst Deborah and Willy were able to surreptitiously slink in through the front door in relative anonymity, they shouldn’t take this for granted, not for long in any case. As the night came to a close, the word spread again … different town, same fame.
From the moment their support, the inimitable Ursula, completed her repertoir (including a rather alternative version of Sound of Music’s ‘Do-Re-Mi’ – smell the irony?), the mood was right. They opened with a couple of new songs before launching into a deliciously upbeat rendition of ‘Release Me’. The place was pumping.
Parenthood must sit well with Deborah and Willy. The lyrics still pack a punch, but now in a measured way. The music is more interesting than ever before – don’t expect to be hand-fed the tune from verse to chorus. Highlights were the hauntingly romantic ‘Here In My Arms’ and ‘This Is The Show’.
Peppered through the new numbers were several Conway classics, including ‘Alive and Brilliant’, and a triple encore of ‘City of Women’, a funky ‘Man Overboard’ and ‘Three Love’. But the best was ‘Today I Am A Daisy’ – if I had three feet, I’d have stamped them all.
Deborah and Willy’s performance was as usual professional, yet challenging. We wait for more – roll on live shows, roll on CD releases … more!
Martin Guenzl

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