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Agitation Free - Shibuya Nights - Live in Tokyo CD (album) cover


Agitation Free



3.82 | 27 ratings

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4 stars "Back in the '70's we were trying to tell a story, today we are able to do so" says Gustl Lutjens, Agitation Free guitar maestro. This newly issued 75 minute recording from a series of Tokyo reunion concerts in 2007 is remarkable for several reasons: it is the original line-up including keyboard man Michael Hoenig (who I assumed had long since given up `rock music') , the performance is streets ahead musically than any of Agitation Free's original 70's albums, and the recording quality and mixing is astounding.

Essentially a round up of Agitation Free's most familiar themes interwoven with a few new/ less familiar, it makes for a seamless 75 minute listening experience which reaches one height after another. Some 14 tracks are listed, but many are played in medleys, giving the music a continuous flow. This is entirely instrumental music and all the better for it. The Drums sound perfect, and the guitar and keys weave themselves around what are at times almost tribal rhythmic motifs.

`You Play For Us Today' and `Sahara City' hark right back to the opening of the first album `Malesch', swiftly followed by `In The Silence Of The Morning Sunrise' from `2nd' with new life breathed into them by older, maturer (and presumably a lot less stoned) men.

This joyful album sustains itself through a variety of moods and dynamics reaching some wonderful peaks, particularly the wonderful, building guitar soloing in `First Communication', and later on `Laila' (no relation). There are original audio verite recordings sprinkled throughout the performances lending further atmosphere, there are gentle, considered passages contrasting with the most intense peaks, showing that AF know how to put a set together.

All in all this immaculately recorded live album shows Agitation Free in a more powerful light than ever before. If you are new to them you could do worse than to start here.

beebfader | 4/5 |


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