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Anyone's Daughter - Live CD (album) cover


Anyone's Daughter


Symphonic Prog

4.31 | 27 ratings

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5 stars A rare beast is a live album that actually surpasses all studio recordings for a band, and is the best place to start one's exploration for that band. I submit that this is the case with "Anyone's Daughter Live", and I know whereof I speak, for it was my introduction to this Stuttgart group, and I consequently became a huge fan. Anyone's Daughter played a sophisticated brand of symphonic prog with all the suspect influences but with a penchant for melodic inventiveness rarely heard before or since. All the instruments sizzle and the vocals, although uncommon, are ideally suited to the music.

Some have argued that the song selection is not the best, being somewhat skewed toward their later period, when the earlier albums are often considered their best. First, I do not agree and I think AD music remained of the highest quality right through their 4 studio albums. Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, the versions presented here are generally better than the original studio workings as well as the subsequent live renditions which appeared on the two Requested Document albums which were released back in the early 2000's. In particular, the gentle essence of "Sundance of the Haute Provence" simply screams classic ballad, while "Adonis Part 1" and "Anyone's Daughter" contain far more pointed soloing by Uwe Karpa. The one two punch of "Der Plan" and "Moria" belongs together, and the keyboard/guitar exchanges of the latter far surpass the original. Yes, "Der Plan" is in fact included in spite of what the liner notes say, appearing as track 12 of 14, one of the most adept blendings of prog and pop ever conceived.

Plenty of space is left for experimentation, including a few pieces that never appeared on a studio album, such as "November", "Sambucca" and "Land's End", which all reveal a slightly jazzy more improvised tendency and enhance the whole effect of the album. True, there is the obligatory drum solo, but some like it and, although I would have rather heard part 2 of Adonis in its place, I cannot punish the band for doing what was expected. "Carrara" contains little segments of the outro to the "Neu Sterne" album but with embellishments, and reminds me very much of classic Camel, but then AD was often called the German Camel. While I love Camel, I have to say that AD had a lot more pizzazz, without showboating, and some of that may have come from other German influences such as Grobschnitt and Eloy, with more than a little John Wetton in Harald Bareth's excellent voice. They also presaged the whole neo prog movement.

Too little known, Anyone's Daughter would make anyone's mother proud, and this one gets my highest recommendation.

kenethlevine | 5/5 |


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