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Emerson Lake & Palmer - The Show That Never Ends CD (album) cover


Emerson Lake & Palmer

Symphonic Prog

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Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Not a bad album, but not a patch on Welcome Back My Friends... Greg Lake's voice seems to have gone the same way as Brian Wilson's and generally ELP are showing their age here. Features Keith Emerson's worst ever solo on "Lucky Man". Worth buying for the versions of Bitches Crystal and Tiger In a Spotlight, also the two medleys at the end are quite good. The sound is a bit sterile and there is no information as to when and where the recordings were made. Interestingly, I think the extract from Karn Evil 9 that was used on Jim Davidson's Generation Game is from this CD.
Report this review (#18924)
Posted Friday, November 26, 2004 | Review Permalink
Easy Livin
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Also known as "The re-packaging of the same tracks that never ends"!

For those who have ELP's "Then and now" album, "The show that never ends" will sound somewhat familiar. If you remove the "Then" tracks (recorded in 1974) from that album, what you are left with is this album. The fact that both are double CD packages gives an indication of the space which is therefore wasted here, indeed the omission of one short track would have allowed this to be a single disc.

The recording quality is excellent, and the song selection by the band diverse. They range from never before performed live songs from "Tarkus", to a 22 minute extravaganza based around "Fanfare for the common man" and Dave Brubeck's "Blue rondo a la Turk". After the stunning initial fanfare, we settle down into a lengthy workout by Emerson on synth and organ. Hidden away in the rendition is an unannounced divergence into "Abaddon's Bolero" and a number of other familiar themes. Carl Palmer also slips in one of his astonishingly energetic, but for me futile, drum solos.

We close with a quick verse of King Crimson's (Lake) "21st Century schizoid man" which leads into Emerson's controversial interpretation of Berstein/Sondheim's "America".

In all, a fine but poorly packaged document of the reformed band's gigs in the late 1990's but don't expect to find anything here which is not already available.

Report this review (#112956)
Posted Wednesday, February 21, 2007 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars I always enjoy live records especially on how the music is performed differently or in fact how well it's performed as close to studio track like what Rush typically does. But of course not all Rush concerts are alike. As far as ELP, I would not expect much on this record which was taken from their Then & Now tour. Of course this is not something compared to their Welcome Back My Friends concert that was legendary. I can feel it when the wonderful Karn Evil 9 only performed partially with only 5 minute duration. It's not typical ELP live really. Of course I do not expect they perform full Karn Evil 9 if they only take some spots of their classic tracks. But I wonder why they prefer to perform Fanfare for The Common Man with such epic duration. Fortunate enough that I still can enjoy Piano Concerto No. 1 as well as From The Beginning that are my favorite tracks.

On the performance itself I don't think Greg Lake voice is something that most of you expect. But naturally I can understand that as he is getting old and gaining such a lot of weight. Other tracks are quite standard and Tarkus is not performed here - it's a regret actually. But I enjoy Carl Palmer drumming and Keith Emerson keyboard playing.

I think this one worth for completionist or collector's item I would say. Keep on proggin' ...!

Report this review (#1133385)
Posted Tuesday, February 18, 2014 | Review Permalink

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