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Emerson Lake & Palmer - Live At The Royal Albert Hall CD (album) cover

LIVE AT THE ROYAL ALBERT HALL

Emerson Lake & Palmer

 

Symphonic Prog

2.88 | 106 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Tarkus31
4 stars To start, this is a live album from ELP's comeback tour in the early 90's. It was recorded at Royal Albert Hall, and had some changes to the ELP structure. I'll state the obvious.

1. Greg Lake's voice HAS changed. Its lower now than in the 70's. Some people dont like it, but I really think it ads to certain songs like Lucky Man.

2. Keith Emerson has added a ton of new keyboards to his collection. He still has the moog and hammond, but he doesnt use them often, and usually uses his new Korg piano/synth, which starts to sound the same after awhile.

3. For some reaon, Carl Palmer uses electronic drums on this album, and only this album, and I have no idea why, as they dont exactly do him justice.

Ok, now to review the album.

It starts out with a VERY short version of Karn Evil 9, just the welcome back my friends etc....which is nothing special here. But the guys then launch directly into Tarkus, which sounds great. It sounds new and fresh with Keith's new synths, and sounds really good here. After Tarkus, comes Knife Edge. While a good track, Keith swaps out his hammond for his synths, which doesnt exactly do anything for the song. I miss the powerful hammond on Knife Edge. Following Knife Edge is Paper Blood. The first track of their new album Black Moon. Its a solid rocker and features a harmonica solo by Greg and several blistering solos from Keith. Then comes Romeo and Juliet, again off of Black Moon. Its an instrumental peice based on Prokofiev's ballet of the same name. It tends to get tedious, but Carl's drum work is pretty cool, and Keith does spout off a solo at the end thats also very cool. Next comes the 'solo' section of the album. Keith and Greg each take a solo peice. Keith does Creole Dance, a so so piano solo. Greg follows up with Still...You Turn Me On, which in my opinion, really benefits from his deeper voice. The band comes back together for a really good rendition of Lucky Man featuring the famous moog solo at the end. To follow this up, the band plays Black Moon, the title track from their new album. It's definatly a return to form for the guys as its a classic ELP track with some great keyboard sections by Keith, and features some pretty good lyrics from Greg. Now they step it up a notch with Pirates. This song greatly bennefits from Keith's new array of synths. Now is where things are weird. On the dvd, Pirates was followed by a stunning version of Pictures at an Exhibition, but its absent on the cd. This is a shame really, as the updated version of Pictures is just awe inspiring, showing the true talent of ELP, and it featured Carl's drum solo, which is not on the cd, aslo a pity. To close the disk out is the epic track Fanfare For The Common Man/America/Rondo. This is the shining star of the entire cd. Fanfare is amazing, better than the original, America is fun and Rondo just blows away anyone who listens to it. It's just emiting raw energy that makes it alot of fun to listen to.

Ok, final verdict. I have to give it four stars. The cd is really good, features some amazing musicianship, but there are several things that harm the final product. 1. Keith's synths. While he updated most of his rig, I really miss the hard, edgy sound of the hammond organ. 2. Lack of Pictures/CP's drum solo. Both are amazing, and should have been included. My only guess as why they werent, as it would have gone over the time limit for one disc, pushing it onto 2, when it really doesnt need to be.

So, 4 stars for Emerson, Lake and Palmer's Live at the Royal Albert Hall.

Tarkus31 | 4/5 |

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