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Pendragon - Concerto Maximo CD (album) cover





4.45 | 103 ratings

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Second Life Syndrome
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Sometimes, there is nothing more richly rewarding than sharing your favorite music with your children. My son, Atlas, is six months old, but he and I have been watching this wonderful DVD for the last few months. Pendragon have taken my world by storm lately, and I had to have this DVD. Even though the guys are looking old, this 2.5 hour+ concert is incredibly detailed and the sound is wonderful. Atlas, being a baby, cries and fusses, but NEVER does any of that when this DVD is playing. He enjoys it thoroughly, and I can't get enough of it either.

The band plays marvelously. Nick sounds sublime, though his attempts at being a "rocker" (that usually only last a second or two) are kinda funny. His guitar work is simply out of this world. I can sit and watch his fingers play for hours and hours. It's mesmerizing, and he is easily one of the best there is. Amazing. Then, of course, you have his partner in crime, Clive Nolan, one of the very best keyboardists. His keys sound so rich, and do not get buried in the mix at all. He impresses me to no end. Peter Gee is outstanding on bass, and also love when he uses his keyboard to create an environment in which Nolan's solos can feel alive. Lastly, but certainly not least, is Scott Higham on drums. My friends, this guy is absolutely incredible. His leadership, power, and passion seem to know no bounds. I especially love watching him play the complex time signature changes, as you can see all the tricks he uses to keep in time. As a whole, then, the band is a machine that just chugs on and on, but the musicians are unbelievably talented on their own, and this shows very clearly in this DVD.

The track list of "Concerto Maximo" is pretty good. Some of my favorites are on here, such as "Walls of Babylon", "Learning Curve", "Breaking the Spell", "Sister Bluebird", and the entire suite of "Wishing Well" (amazing work!). This DVD, however, has an uncanny way of making me fall in love with other songs even more deeply than on the albums themselves. "The Shadow" might be my favorite track from Pendragon now because of the intricacy and passion with which it is performed here. "Masters of Illusion", too, has gotten this treatment. I believe that this DVD has elevated my love for the entire "Masquerade Overture" album in general.

I must comment on the camera work, Most DVD concerts don't have much in the way of special cinematography, let alone camera movement that syncs with the musical flow. "Concerto Maximo" does. I especially love the drummer cameras, and the camera that is on a track at the top of the venue. They always switch to the latter and produce some cool, twisting movements during a really cool keyboard solo, and it just feels so organic. It pulls you into the experience.

Pendragon are one of my top 5 favorite bands, and I'm so glad I can share this experience with my son. I see myself enjoying this DVD for many, many years, and I want to buy all of the rest of their DVDs, too. Someday, though, I hope to take my son to see them live. Here's to hoping...

Second Life Syndrome | 5/5 |


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