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Big Big Train - A Stone's Throw From the Line CD (album) cover


Big Big Train

Crossover Prog

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5 stars More Big Big Train is a good thing! I think this performance is excellent, so any fan of their music should definitely pick it up. The sound quality is solid for a live show, but it is not the same for those that have been enjoying the studio recordings at 24 bit 48khz. Those high resolution studio recordings have punch, but you get the interactive element with a live audience, and some differences in music and vocal performance for this release. I can listen to their music on as many different presentations as they offer. David Longdon took me by surprise on some notes as he showed some versatility in a looser live setting. Nick D'Virgilio sounds great on drums as usual, Greg Spawton is excellent, and the addition of Rikard Sj÷blom adds to an already amazing pool of talent. I think this is an excellent addition to any progressive rock fan's collection, and a must for Big Big Train fans. The band that takes me on journeys across the pond through their music has given me a new journey to enjoy. A big kudos to Greg Spawton and crew for amazing musicianship and an excellent live presentation!
Report this review (#1651689)
Posted Saturday, December 3, 2016 | Review Permalink
4 stars Excellent, but very close to the studio versions.

This album is very high quality. Not only are the performances excellent, but these are among the very best of Big Big Trains' compositions. However, I have a hard time giving this five stars, because the songs are played so close to the studio versions. Only Nick D'Virgilio's excellent drum solo is really new. Ok, a few of the guitar solos are played a bit differently, and Rachel Hall plays violin here, so that adds a slightly different sound to select parts of the album. But on the whole, this plays is pretty straight. Given how talented the band is, I would have liked to see them try and interpret their own music a bit differently. Perhaps extend some of the pieces, or truncate/medley them, or add new parts, or sing parts without instrumentation, etc. This wouldn't need to happen on every track - even if they just mashed up a couple, so one could say "but you really got to hear this live version - its so different". Alas, such is not the case. What we have here is excellent performances of essentially the studio versions. An enjoyable collection, but not quite five stars on account of creativity. I give this album 8.8 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which translates to high 4 PA stars.

Report this review (#1743310)
Posted Thursday, July 13, 2017 | Review Permalink

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