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Prefab Sprout: Shepherd's Bush Empire, London

Barney Hoskyns, MOJO, June 2000

A THIRD of the way through this rare Sprout outing to the capital, Paddy McAloon dedicates the lovely, little-known 'Dragons' to the spouse of his keyboard player Jess Bailey. Unsurprisingly everyone guffaws as McAloon realises his gaffe: wives and dragons should never co-exist in the same sentence. "You can see why we don’t play live very often," the head Sprout mutters with a forlorn smile.

Total word count of piece: 420