Harlesdon Mean Fiddler Sounds 14.4.87

JUDGING BY the number of CBS PR's strutting their funky stuff to this cry of Scottish dignity, it won't be long before Deacon Blue face a pride swallowing decision. Whether to become a finely honed, one song, Curiosity- type pop band, or to ditch the power-brokers and retain some small slice of diversity. Here, the battle already seems in full swing as one or two leather jacketed members of the auld guard valiantly compete with a hoard of yuppies.

Lorraine McIntosh's guttural voice wreaks havoc over Ricky Ross' soul- searching in 'Chocolate Girl', but in the main she's restricted to backing vocals. Song titles like 'Dignity', 'Suffering' and 'Loaded' may well soon ride that fine line of hypocrisy, with recollections of working days and hardship on one side of the fence and a stack of gold discs on the other.

But their enthusiasm and pride remain plus points for the moment at least, and Deacon Blue retain a fine repertoire of songs with individual character. Shaun Phillips