Top Of The Pops Thursday: Ultravox

The Choob is off to see the newly-reformed Ultravox in Glasgow (lead singer Midge Ure ‘s home city) this weekend.

The Return To Eden Tour marks the first time since Live Aid in 1985 that the classic-era Ultravox line-up (Ure, Billy Currie, Chris Cross and Warren Cann) have performed together.

They were one of my favourite bands when I was a teenager and I saw them at Glasgow’s Barrowland on their final tour, back in ’87, before they split (they were a three-piece by then as Cann had already departed). So, 22 years later (yikes!), I’m delighted to be going to their first reunion tour as well.

And so, in honour of the masters of ’80s New Romantic synthpop, this week (or at least the next few days) is officially Ultravox Week on The Cathode Ray Choob.

First up, for Top Of The Pops Thursday, we have a few classic live Ultravox performances.

And lets start with the ultimate gig of all time, 1985’s Live Aid:

First, Dancing With Tears In My Eyes (from the 1984 album Lament) and the band’s signature song, and biggest hit, Vienna (from the 1980 album of the same name):

Also from Live Aid (these tracks did not make it onto the Live Aid DVD release a couple of years ago – the sound quality is a bit variable), here are Reap The Wild Wind (from the 1982 album Quartet) and One Small Day (my all-time favourite Ultravox song), from the Lament album:

Next, some of their less-well known songs. Here is the first single from the Midge Ure era, and their first top-40 hit, Sleepwalk (from the Viennaalbum), as performed on the BBC’s Top Of The Pops circa 1980:

Here is the Mine For Life, from the Quartet album and filmed at the London Hammersmith Odeon during the band’s 1982 Monument tour:

This one is All Stood Still, also from Vienna, filmed at a gig in Dortmund, West Germany, in 1983:

Next up, the haunting, celtic sounds of Man Of Two Worlds, from Lament, performed on the BBC’s Oxford Road Show in 1984:

And finally, Serenade, from the album Quartet, performed (I think) on Saturday-morning kids TV show Get Set For Summer:


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