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Anekdoten - Waking The Dead - Live In Japan 2005  CD (album) cover




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4.51 | 89 ratings

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5 stars The seventies were not only a golden era for progressive rock but also for live albums with many bands equalling, or even surpassing studio versions of songs on classics such as Made In Japan (Deep Purple), Yessongs (Yes) and All The World's A Stage (Rush) to name three, which of course is only the tip of the iceberg. Since then great live albums have been far less frequent, seemingly often tampered with so much in the studio that they lose the live feel that these great albums exuded and end up just sounding like inferior rehashes of studio versions with added crowd noise. A band that are a rare exception to this rule are Anekdoten who have not only released one great live album but two. Waking The Dead - Live In Japan 2005 is the second of these and was released some seven years after their first (not including the live ep) so no accusations of live album overkill like some bands I could mention can be levelled at them.

Both live albums are essential for the Anekdoten fan as there's no repetition in tracks between them. Where as Official Bootleg focused on their first two albums this one largely concentrates on albums three and four, From Within and Gravity.

Musically Anekdoten are at the heavier end of the prog spectrum, their first two albums in particular had clear King Crimson influences but by the time From Within and Gravity emerged they were displaying much more of their own identity in their sound, the music now more haunting, the riffs less angular and often locking into hypnotic grooves. Check out Hole and The Sun Absolute here for the proof of which there are superb versions. Mellotron lovers will be in heaven as Anna Sofi Dahlberg covers each track in all- encompassing waves. A particularly welcome inclusion is Sad Rain, a song that could have sat easily on King Crimsons In The Court Of The Crimson King album. Until the release of 2009's Chapters compilation the only way fans of the band could own this excellent song was on the Japanese version of their debut Vemod or here. Another bonus is the inclusion of two unreleased tracks, the first being Moons Of Mars, a mellotron only composition which though short forms a nice introduction into The Sun Absolute. The second is This Too Will Pass, another instrumental which while not destined to be an Anekdoten classic is still very worthwhile.

In common with those previously mentioned great seventies live albums the sound here really captures the excitement and feel of a live show; as they explode into Monolith at the start of the cd it's like having a front row seat, such is the power it exudes.

A big disappointment for me is that I've never managed to see Anekdoten live. Thankfully I have this brilliant cd (and Official Bootleg) as more than adequate compensation.

Nightfly | 5/5 |


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