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Arena - Welcome Back! To The Stage CD (album) cover

WELCOME BACK! TO THE STAGE

Arena

 

Neo-Prog

3.51 | 15 ratings

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ZowieZiggy
Prog Reviewer
3 stars CAUTION !

This live EP is the perfect companion for Arena's first live album titled "Welcome To The Stage". Both were recorded at the same venue, the concert hall Le D'Auteuil in Quebec in May 1997.

I guess that the reason why Arena released this work separately is simply technical. These numbers could not fit on the original "Welcome" which lasted already for about seventy-three minutes. Unfortunately, at the time of this review, this work is no longer available (out of print).

It is part of Arena's "Cage CD's". This collection comprises "The Visitor Revisited", "Radiance", "Unlocking The Cage - 1995 - 2000", "The Edits" and this one. They are more collector items and dedicated to die-hard fans. They were produced in limited quantities.

Only three numbers will be featured :

"Empire Of A Thousand Days" is almost hard-rock. Not their best one, I'm afraid. It is almost a carbon copy of the studio track.

While I was reviewing Arena's "Pride" album I mentioned that "Fool's Gold" showed a lot of similarities with "The Knife" (especially in the intro, but not only). Since it was a rather rocking and solid number on the studio album, it is even more comparable in this great live version. The best number on this EP (and one of the best of both "Welcome"). Really a great number, perfectly rendered while played live.

The last song is the last encore of this concert. It is a very popular Arena live track (still played, well at least when I saw them in 2005). It is one of the "Crying For Help" songs. Namely the fourth one.

It starts very gently to give the audience a break after their great concert (Arena is very good on stage, believe me). Usually, the audience is "helping" with its vocal participation; but it will not be the case here. As such, this EP is a collector item. Still it is a pretty nice little one. three stars.

ZowieZiggy | 3/5 |

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