Tales of Boomtown Glory: A book to be celebrated as long overdue
Book review: Page by page, Geldof’s restless intelligence revealed itself to Joseph O’Connor
The young Bob Geldof in London, 1977. Photograph: Corbis via Getty Images
In my youth the Boomtown Rats were new, disconcerting and delightful. The era was punk, a flag of convenience to which many bands resorted, but the Rats had a musical hinterland that included high-octane rhythm and blues and the early Bowie and Bolan tracks Bob Geldof had heard in the basement coffee-bar of Murray’s record shop in Dún Laoghaire, an oasis the sands of time have long removed.
In Simon Crowe they had a tremendous drummer, and they had a powerful sense of the visual. Early promotional materials were imaginative and attention-grabbing. The piano player wore pyjamas on stage, an act of the most unprecedented sartorial insurrectionism.