1980-06-21 Top Alex, Southend-On-Sea, Essex, England, UK

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Notes

Composition Of Sound played at this venue; see poster below.

Dave Gahan said in Pop Tops magazine in 1981: "Our debut together was at the Top Alex, a Southend venue that's an R&B stronghold. We went down really well - they were banging their heads to our pop."

In the press release for 'New Life', Martin Gore wrote that this performance at Top Alex had a "horrendous reception!"

BBC London host Robert Elms recalls:

“This place was above a greengrocers or dry cleaners or something. It really was. It was a room 8ft by 10ft with about 10 people in with silly haircuts and baggy trousers. I thought there can’t be a band playing here. We went in and then these four, frighteningly young boys, I mean I was young, I was only 18 or 19 and these looked like my little brother. These were skinny school kids basically standing around some ten bob keyboards. They started to play and I thought this is really good, they are going to be really terrible, cause that’s what you hoped, it was like going to see the opposition football team and they started to play and they weren’t terrible.”

Robert Marlow remembers in Jonathan Miller's 'Stripped' biography:

"The Top Alex was in a Southend Pub called The Alexandra. They had a room there at the top - Top Alex, see? I did the lights for that one - on or off! 'What do you want for this song? On or off?'"