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Kansas - Sail On: The 30th Anniversary Collection 1974-2004 CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.18 | 34 ratings

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4 stars If you are a Kansas fan, you might think twice to have this boxed set in your collection because I'm sure that you have collected each album of Kansas since their debut. But, one thing you need to consider: the Disc Three - DVD of archival footage of Kansas through the years - is truly an excellent part. This is my first time watching the band live during the glory years of seventies. All members were still young with long hair. Robbie Steinhardt performed his violin wonderfully. Steve Walsh sung while playing keyboards stunningly. Phil Ehart performed his machine-gun drumming. Kerry Livgreen played calmly with the guitar but his guitar riffs and sounds were truly awesome; providing great fills between lyrical passages. Richard Williams on another guitar plays most of the time on the right side of Steve with little body movement. The picture is also excellent.

Well, the first time I watched the DVD my mind clicked right away to the old days when, I remember vividly, songs like "Carry On Wayward Son" was regularly covered by local band here in my country and also it topped up as one of the radio hits. When I watched the DVD especially on the first five tracks of the DVD (from "Can I Tell" to "Pinnacle") I was like returning back to that teenage era where rock music was very common. And, I have never seen the band live in that era. The only thing I have ever seen was through the band's D-V-D (Device-Voice-Drum) DVD released couple years ago.

This DVD set is a true adrenalin exploder for me. I was emotionally attached to the band as it reminded me to my nice past days when a group of friends that shared the same aspirations in music exchanged cassettes of rock groups because we could not afford to buy all the collection at the time. Kansas was one of the bands featured beside Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd, Gentle Giant, Led Zeppelin, Jethro Tull, etc. The favorite albums at the time were: "Leftoverture" because of Magnum Opus and Carry On Wayward Son, and of course "Masque". That's why when the DVD reaches track 5 "Pinnacle" played live by the band I was like having tears in my eyes and this track I repeated five times!

Pinnacle opens with a nice music with melodic violin play by Robbie Steinhardt combined with solid bassline, augmented with great keyboard work by Steve Walsh. Just before the first lyrical verse, Robbie played his violin brilliantly and bring the music to the first lyrical part which is very melodic: "I've so much to say, and yet I cannot speak. Come and do my bidding now for I have grown too weak. My weary eyes have seen all that life can give". Oh man . what a great opening lyrics! I also like the part when Steve sings "I stood where no man goes, and conquered demon foes. With glory and passion no longer in fashion. The hero breaks his blade". It then continues with Robbie's singing beautifully with "Lying at my feet I see the offering you bring." followed with duet singing of Steve and Robbie: "The answer is that sweet refrain. Unheard it always will remain. Beyond our reach, beyond our gain ". Oh my God . what a nice song! (While watching this song performed, I grabbed my laptop and shared my feelings about how great this song is thru my friendster blogs last night).

Pinnacle is only an example of how great the DVD is - especially in featuring the archive footage of past years. Even though it was taken from various venues but the live footage is still very interesting to enjoy. With an excellent boxed set package plus the DVD of past live performances - it suffices to say that this boxed set is an excellent addition to any prog collection. And this is a very good introduction to those who have not known Kansas. Highly recommended.

Progressively yours,

GW - Review #303

Life is amusing though we are losing. Drowned in tears of awe. - "Pinnacle" - KANSAS

Gatot | 4/5 |


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