Madness Live At The Hammersmith Odeon 1980

Live At The Hammersmith Odeon – 23.12.80 is a live recording that’s available with the 2010 enhanced version of their second studio album Absolutely.

It was recorded in London and broadcast by the BBC.  Their are 21 live tracks on the UK version on the Union Square Music Limited but the US version on had lost a few of the live tracks. Careful needs to be taken when buying it to make sure that you get the version that offers the best value for money.

This is from the time when Madness were still a ska band although there were signs of their nutty pop sound coming through on hit singles like Baggy Trousers. If you like The Specials, The Beat, Bad Banners and The Selecter but you’re put off Madness by their irritating hits, you need to investigate this album.

Madness Live At The Hammersmith Odeon

Songs On Madness Live At The Hammersmith Odeon 1980 / Absolutely 2010 Reissue

This is from the UK version of the CD:

Disc: 1
1. Baggy Trousers
2. Embarrassment
3. E.R.N.I.E.
4. Close Escape
5. Not Home Today
6. On The Beat Pete
7. Solid Gone
8. Take It Or Leave It
9. Shadow Of Fear
10. Disappear
11. Overdone
12. In The Rain
13. You Said
14. The Return Of The Los Palmas 7
15. In The Rain (Single Version) (B-Side 12″ ‘My Girl’) – Bonus
16. The Business (B-Side ‘Baggy Trousers’) – Bonus
17. Crying Shame (B-Side ‘Embarrassment’) – Bonus
18. That’s The Way To Do It (B-Side ‘The Return Of The Los Palmas 7’ 7″) – Bonus
19. El Regresso De Los Palmas 7 (Spanish Version) – Bonus
20. Swan Lake (Live) (B-Side ‘The Return Of The Los Palmas 7′ 12″) – Bonus
21. Release Me / Close Escape / Solid Gone (Patches flexi-disc) – Bonus
22. Baggy Trousers – Promo Video
23. Embarrassment – Promo Video
24. The Return Of The Los Palmas 7 – Promo Video

Disc: 2
1. One Step Beyond… (originally on the studio album One Step Beyond)
2. E.R.N.I.E (Absolutely)
3. Mistakes (the B side to the One Step Beyond single)
4. Disappear (Absolutely)
5. Bed And Breakfast Man (One Step Beyond)
6. The Return Of The Los Palmas 7 (Absolutely)
7. Close Escape (Absolutely)
8. Overdone (Absolutely)
9. Not Home Today (Absolutely)
10. Razor Blade Alley (One Step Beyond)
11. My Girl (One Step Beyond)
12. Take It Or Leave It (Absolutely)
13. On The Beat Pete (Absolutely)
14. Embarrassment (Absolutely)
15. Shadow Of Fear (Absolutely)
16. You Said (Absolutely)
17. In The Middle Of The Night (One Step Beyond)
18. The Prince (One Step Beyond)
19. Baggy Trousers (Absolutely)
20. Rockin’ In Ab (One Step Beyond)
21. Madness (One Step Beyond)

The Amazon mp3 download version excludes the three videos (tracks 22 to 24 on the first disk).

With so many tracks, if you put your music on an mp3 player, I recommend that you break it into three – the Absolutely studio album, the bonuses and the Hammersmith Odeon concert. That’s what I did but then I mainly bought it for the live concert recording.

The Hammersmith gig is a great summary of their first two studio albums performed with great enthusiasm and energy live in concert. It gets off to a terrific start with One Step Beyond and you can imagine the lads bouncing around the stage.

Later live albums by Madness lack this commitment to ska as they had become a successful singles band with their nutty image.


Buying Madness Live At The Hammersmith Odeon 1980

Care needs to be taken because Discogs shows that there are many, many different versions of Absolutely. It’s easy to make sure you get the full live version if you’re in the UK but may be much more difficult elsewhere.

It is available from

These links will help you get to the albums quickly and easily but I recommend that you still search for the best deal.

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