National Health’s final line-up (1979-80) is well documented in live recordings, but this one in Vanersborg on 2nd March 1980 is made extra special by being Alan Gowen’s last performance with the band, and his penultimate public appearance (he played an improvised set in Bracknell with Hugh Hopper and Nigel Morris the following September). Sadly the tape cuts off before the end of “Toad Of Toad Hall” so we don’t have the last notes played (and perhaps there was an encore as well), but this is a great performance and captured in fine sound. Of special interest is the inclusion of the only new piece, Phil’s “A Fleeting Glance” (introduced as “An Audience Of One”), which had been rehearsed but not played on the 1979 North American tour. It would of course appear on the “Before A Word Is Said” album by Alan, Phil, Richard Sinclair and Trevor Tomkins. (The performance here is the same one used on the video made available on this site some time ago.) NH quietly went their separate ways after returning from this Scandinavian tour, with Phil and Pip attempting to get a new band (Flying Ducks) together with Richard Sinclair and James Lascelles, the keyboard player from Global Village Trucking Company, John Greaves working on a proposed follow-up to “Kew. Rhone.” with Peter Blegvad and Alan Gowen recording “Two Rainbows Daily” with Hugh Hopper.
Phil Miller – guitar
Alan Gowen – electric piano, synth
John Greaves – bass, crooning
Pip Pyle – drums