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Emerson Lake & Palmer - Live In Poland CD (album) cover

LIVE IN POLAND

Emerson Lake & Palmer

 

Symphonic Prog

3.25 | 41 ratings

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SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
4 stars Rest assured you'll get your money's worth: The greatest show in Heaven, Hell or Earth!

When Emerson, Lake & Palmer returned to the stage in late 90's, they put on a better show than they had done since their peak in the mid 70's. At least this is so judging from how they sound on this live album, recorded in Poland in 1997 (and other live recordings from this period, there are several). Live In Poland is in my opinion a better live album than both Live At The Royal Albert Hall (recorded in the early 90's when touring in support of Black Moon) and In Concert (aka Works Live; recorded in the late 70's when touring in support of the Works albums).

Even tough they had no new material at this time, with the latest (and still the last to date) studio album In The Hot Seat already some years in the past. Nothing from that 1994 album made it into this set list, which is probably for the better (even if I personally think it does have some good moments that would be interesting to hear in a live setting). Given the fact that they didn't have any new material to perform, it is not surprising that the set list runs like a best of collection focusing on classics from the 1970's heyday.

They open, as always, with Karn Evil 9 (1st Impression, Part 2). This is a good version, though it must by said that the band takes some time to warm up here. Still, this version is better than the heavily truncated one that opened Live At The Royal Albert Hall. This is followed by Touch And Go, originally from the 1986 Emerson, Lake & Powell album. I like this song, but it is with From The Beginning that the show really takes off. Greg shines here and this is followed by further excellent performances of Knife Edge, Bitches Crystal, Take A Pebble, and Lucky Man.

At the end of the disc are two "medleys" clocking in at over 17 minutes respectively. The first one features Tarkus and Pictures At An Exhibition, both of which are superb and excellently performed. Again, in comparison with Live At The Royal Albert Hall, Tarkus is not so heavily truncated even though I would rather have had a more complete performance of this great epic number. The same goes for Pictures At An Exhibition which sounds much better here than on Works Live or indeed than the original live version on the band's first official live album. The show finishes off with Fanfare For The Common Man/Rondo, which allows the band some jamming, and I must confess that there are some segments that I could live happily without. Still, this is overall a very good live album.

SouthSideoftheSky | 4/5 |

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