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Procol Harum - Live In Concert With The Edmonton Symphony Orchestra CD (album) cover

LIVE IN CONCERT WITH THE EDMONTON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA

Procol Harum

 

Crossover Prog

4.07 | 123 ratings

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Rune2000
Special Collaborator
Prog Metal Team
3 stars An so the mighty Harum followed in the footsteps of a few other bands of their time and recorded an album with a symphony orchestra. Only the more symphonic material was chosen for this release from the band's wide repertoire which probably has to do with the fact that soul and blues material probably wouldn't gain all that much from a symphonic rearrangement.

The album features some of my all-time favorite Procol Harum songs, but unfortunately for this release, I find the studio versions to be far more superior. The only exception to that rule comes with the opening number off the debut album called Conquistador which is definitely an improvement in term of musical arrangement that the hasty released debut album just could supply. This version is so superior that it was even chosen as this album's only single, which is quite uncommon for a live album to even have.

There are a few bumps along the way but I was hoping that the band would have done a masterful reworking of their epic composition we know by the title In Held 'Twas In I. But instead of the royal treatment this lengthy piece truly deserved I found it to be blown out of proportion which probably has more to do with the fact that I'm so used to the studio version than anything else. The band tries to make every section sound even grander and more striking but in the end it just sounds completely unnecessary since what it actually lacks, in the end, is its own personality.

Aside from the magnificent opener this album does nothing to improve on the studio material and in some cases I just miss those great original performances. This is a good, but non-essential release which I primarily recommend to experienced Procol Harum fans.

***** star songs: Conquistador (5:01)

**** star songs: A Salty Dog (5:34) In Held 'Twas In I (19:07) All This And More (4:29)

*** star songs: Whaling Stories (7:41)

Rune2000 | 3/5 |

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