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Phil Lynott

Phil Lynott - Songs For While I’m Away / Thin Lizzy - The Boys Are Back In Town (2 DVD/CD) set

Review by Gary Hill

You'll note that I've included this under Phil Lynott's name instead of under the Thin Lizzy banner. I think that's the right place for it as the documentary on his life is actually considered (I believe) to be the main offering here, with the other items being bonuses. The cover makes that a little confusing, but I think they probably wanted to emphasize the name that they think will give it the highest profile.

"Songs For While I'm Away" is a documentary about the life of Phil Lynott. Of course, that life is firmly tied to Thin Lizzy. I would say that it's because Thin Lizzy really was a product of Lynott, though. I can't imagine the band ever existing without him.

The documentary is compelling and interesting from start to finish. I see it as a human story and a rather tragic one at that. I mean, Lynott rose to becoming a rock icon despite having all sorts of obstacles set in his way. Perhaps the most tragic thing is that, ultimately he became his own worst enemy, ultimately leading to his death. I'd highly recommend this biography to anyone who has ever had even the slightest interest in Lynott. I'd also add a caveat, though. If you are like me, you might have trouble understanding what some of the folks say here due to their accents.

So, looking beyond that feature, we get a live DVD and accompanying CD from Thin Lizzy.. The show was recorded in October of 1978 and showcases the band during a powerhouse concert. This was previously released, but the new version not only has a revamped video and audio presence, but it includes songs that were left off the first time. I like how they allow you to run it multiple ways, too, including watching the original version. All in all, I think this is an exceptional release where the bonus material is just about as good as the feature stuff.

This review is available in book (paperback and hardcover) form in Music Street Journal: 2022  Volume 4. More information and purchase links can be found at:


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