Scour any number of rock tomes and the name [B]Miracle Legion[/B] refuses to appear beyond the smallest footnote. [B]Huey Lewis And The News[/B] don't have that problem...

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Scour any number of rock tomes and the name Miracle Legion refuses to appear beyond the smallest footnote. Huey Lewis And The News don’t have that problem. Ask the average audience to name a Huey Lewis hit and they’re bound to come up with something. Mark Mulcahy, though, is a man who likes to twist matters a little.

“What was the fourth Huey Lewis And The News hit?” he demands, before reeling off the other three with unseemly haste. “‘Hip To Be Square’, ‘The Power Of Love’, ‘Stuck With You’…” The former singer with Miracle Legion, a definitive legend of the ’80s American alternajangle, laughs as suggestions come piling in from people who should know better. After rejecting some especially vociferous votes for ‘I Want A New Drug’, he finally acknowledges ‘If This Is It’ with a telling chuckle.

Telling, because if anyone currently brandishing a guitar and the most seductive, gymnastic larynx in pop is ‘it’, he is Mark Mulcahy. This rock’n’roll koala bear – same come-to-bed eyes, same don’t-mess-with-me claws – hasn’t allowed over-familiarity with the fuzzy-end of rock’s lollipop to dull his appreciation for the sensual world. “You show me naked ladies/’Cos that’s what I like”, he sings in ‘Tempted’.

Forbidden fruit are his speciality, the riper the better, and in that remarkable voice he has the instrument to skewer the loneliest hearts every time. When Mulcahy vaults octaves it’s not some exercise just to prove he can, but a pure expression of one man and his self-edification in song. He’ll fumble at the guitar, like Richard Thompson picking notes apart as if to see where they’ve come from, always returning them to the source, stronger for the experience.

He’s backed tonight by The Unbelievable Truth‘s rhythm section, but really they add little to the process, other than to reiterate the remarkable renaissance of a generation’s great lost troubadour. Roll over Tim Buckley, and tell Huey Lewis the news.