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Saga In Transit album cover
3.72 | 118 ratings | 14 reviews | 34% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Live, released in 1982

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Careful Where You Step
2. Don't Be Late
3. Humble Stance
4. Wind Him Up
5. How Long
6. No Regrets
7. Brief Case, A
8. You're Not Alone
9. On The Loose

Line-up / Musicians

- Ian Crichton / guitar
- Jim Crichton / synthesizer, bass, keyboards
- Jim Gilmour / clarinet, keyboards, vocals
- Steve Negus / percussion, drums, drums (electric)
- Michael Sadler / keyboards, vocals

Releases information

Released: August, 1982
Recorded: Copenhagen, Munich

CD Polydor 800 100-2 (1994)
CD Maze/Kraze 1073

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to gchristi for the last updates
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SAGA In Transit ratings distribution

(118 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(34%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(44%)
Good, but non-essential (14%)
Collectors/fans only (8%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

SAGA In Transit reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
2 stars Most Torontonians were evidently proud that Styx opened for Saga in continental Europe and in big conert hall, but we didn't understand why , though. In Toronto , they were definitely less popular than Rush , Triumph and Max Webster. This was starting to appeal more to new wave fans than to real bona-fide rockers.
Review by greenback
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This is one of the best progressive live albums: all the tracks sound as good as the studio ones, sometimes better! The tracks are taken from the 4 first studio albums: they choose the very accessible and catchy ones, so that this album could be good for any Saga beginner: there are "How long", "Don't be late", "On the loose" and "Humble stance", among others. All the instruments are very well balanced. There is even an EXCELLENT electronic drums solo. The very participating crowd is quite enthusiastic. Some bits are even better than on the studio album, like the very spacy part and the Van Halen-esque guitar solo on "Humble stance", or the floating bit with clarinet on "No regrets".

Rating: 4.5 stars

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars It's an Excellent Rock Live Concert .

It's Saturday morning and I opened the day with a limited ed. CD of Arena "Pepper's Ghost" (third spin) at my CD player, turned my power amps with loud volume. Uugh . what an excellent album! I listened it in its entirety. (At the same time I received a short message on my mobile phone from my prog mate, Imam, telling me that he was rocking with Rush in Rio DVD). I then drove my 7th grade daughter, Dian, to school while playing Uriah Heep's "Sea of Light" - for a change as I have been listening too much "prog" so I need something like a hard driving music to elevate my spirit. Btw, she's got used to with her dad's rocking style - so don't worry she is okey with Uriah Heep. I'm fired up man. Right after I dropped her at school, "It's another time to rock man .! Yeah .." And I don't know why I changed the CD at my car's magazine with SAGA "In Transit" and I turned the volume completely LOUD because I was the only one in my car (freedooooom..!!!) and the street that I was driving was not congested with traffic. Yeah man . SAGA makes my day! Well, I knew SAGA for the first time through this album and it BLEW me away .. I love live records and this record is so excellent, energetic and delivered excellently by the band. I think this album is one of the best rock live records I have ever known so far. By the time I knew this album, I never listened to the band's studio album. [My dear readers, big apology for a very long background I keyed in the beginning. I'm just trying to project the nuance where I spin this CD as music has always colored my day-to-day life. No music no life.]. Let's talk about the album in great details .

This live record starts off with MC's short rocking speech "Ladies and gentlemen would you welcome ..SAGA .!!!" followed with noisy hand clapping from the crowd (I like it man!). It continues with single layer keyboard punch followed with solo and louder hand clapping and shouting from the crowd and drum set's high-hat work followed with drumming and bass. It remarks the performance of first track Careful Where You Step wonderfully. What a lively rock concert nuance I can sense right here from the CD! I can not imagine if I was there in the concert, I would sing a long with the band man . The lead singer enters the music with a powerful and energetic vocal. This song is packed with great keyboard, sometimes in staccato styles and stunning guitar. The music passage that starts from minute [2:10] until end is so powerful for my personal taste as it has so many catchy segments as results of intertwining sounds of keyboard, guitar and drum. It kills my heart (not joking) really. So melodic and powerful, performed in progressive style at its best!

The second track Don't Be Late flows seamlessly from the opening track. At the opening part it consists of voice line accompanied with inventive keyboard sound and high-hat sounds from drum set. Unlike the first track, this one is performed in slow-moderate tempo style with great keyboard work at background and its dynamic play during transition pieces. Guitar solo takes its part nicely in the middle of the track. An excellent track.

Humble Stance is truly a KILLER! Yeah man . this is my best favorite SAGA songs I have ever known so far! "And the next tune from album number one. It's called Humble Stance" - followed with heavy clapping / shouting from the crowd and a catchy keyboard intro. Oh man .. I love this sound! The clapping getting louder and the drum sound enters the music wonderfully followed with a combination of guitar and keyboard. Lead singer enters the music in his energetic singing style with very strong accentuation at the end part of lyrical phrases. Again, this track is packed with catchy melodies with excellent combination of keyboard and guitar for both roles: as rhythm section or as solo. Melodic but energetic style of composition.

Wind Him Up starts with an uplifting mood with more upbeat tempo. It contains wonderful keyboard and guitar works with a sort of electric drum sound. The music flow in relatively straight forward structure. It features some catchy melody and nice solos. The guitar rhythm sounds like a soft riffs especially in transitions. The guitar solo in the middle of the track augmented with keyboard is stunning. Drums also demonstrate its dynamic play.

The next song How Long kicks off with unique keyboard sound accompanied by drumming. The vocal enters the music with solid accentuation singing style. The interlude contains harmonious sounds of guitar and keyboard. It continues with a mellow track exploring keyboard / effects and vocals under No Regrets. The show continues with the band's communication with the crowd "Are You Ready?" continued with amazing drum solo under A Brief Case. Excellent solo rich with variations. It continues with soft guitar riffs that remark the start of You're Not Alone, performed in medium-fast tempo with multi vocals. The show concludes with On The Loose.

Recommended. This live album is I think accessible to wider rock music buffs - be it progger or non-progger - as it's so lively and so attractive. Uhm .. I wrote this view with deep emotional involvement as I feel like I'm part of the crowd who watch the band plays live. Keep on proggin' .!!!

Progressively yours,


Review by erik neuteboom
4 stars This is the only album from Saga that survived in my progrock LP collection, for me it is a perfect compilation of their best compositions. Saga had a fresh and dynamic sound, based upon lush keyboard work (four members play keyboards, even the drummer has a Micro- moog!), distinctive guitar play (the deaden of the strings reminds me of Al DiMeola) and a tight and propulsive rhythm-section. The vocals are powerful and very pleasant to hear. The nine tracks on this album are scouting the borders between pop, rock and symphonic often featuring swinging and catchy rhytms, strong and spectacular soli on keyboards and guitar and great interplay between all the musicians. Every song has its own colouring and dynamics. In "Don't be late" first mellow with beautiful strings and a bit melancholical vocals, then halfway an exciting accellaration delivering sensational synthesizer flights and a harder-edged guitar solo. In "Humble stance" a heavy guitar solo follows a spectacular synthesizer solo, culminating in a captivating duel. The mellow track "No regrets" contains Supertramp-like electric piano along clarinet and romantic vocals. The short but very catchy drum solo in "A brief case" evokes warm crowd participation, in my opinion the drummer must have been inspired by fellow Canadian Neil Peart. My favorite on this live- album is "You're not alone": it starts with a heavy guitar riff, followed by a catchy rhythm featuring a splendid vocal performance and compelling interplay between the rhythm- section, keyboards and guitar. Halfway Ian Crichton caresses the ears with a fiery electric guitar solo, so powerful and distinctive! And again the enthousiastic crowd participation emphasized what a stunning live-act Saga was. A GREAT LIVE RECORD!!
Review by Matti
3 stars I'd like to talk about SAGA (which I listened in my early teens) in general because, even if the band has been active to these days, I feel them belonging tightly to the early eighties rock scene. I'm advicing that if you are an 80's hater, forget about SAGA. Would I sound ridiculous if I described SAGA as a cross between SCORPIONS and ULTRAVOX of the time? I mean a mix of 80's hard rock and synth pop, plus some sophisticated side to it, say TWELFTH NIGHT meets SUPERTRAMP. But on this live album the material has emphasis on catchy synth-driven hard rock numbers like 'Wind Him Up' and 'You're Not Alone' and therefor a slightly narrower pallette than on Saga's studio albums. Yes, there is the peaceful 'No Regrets', but not e.g. 'Images' or 'Time to Go'.

'Don't Be Late', one of my favourite Saga songs, is a perfect example of the 80's feel, deliciously dramatic with whispered lines and all. The same about the ending of 'Humble Stance': slow synth pulse; "aa-aah, there's no one going to help you... aa- aah, there's no one going to [whispered again] HELP YOU...." Yeah! Maybe corny but sorta lovely. On the whole... (while others praise this to be technically superior to studio material, and in a way they're right I guess), borrowing this live album maybe wasn't as fond a nostalgic rendez-vous as SAGA's studio albums might have been. A couple more listens and goodbye again.

Review by Melomaniac
4 stars The timing for the release of Saga's first live album could not have been better, as it was recorded on the heels of their most successful album and it caught the band in excellent form. The sound is great, the song selection is excellent, containing some of the strongest moments of their four previous studio recordings, and every member's performance is almost flawless, proving without a shadow of doubt just how good musicians these guys are, and it's not only a studio affair, far from it. The crowd is ecstatic throughout, and one will understand why when listening. I wish this show had been captured on video, it would have been awesome. My only complaint about this album is IT'S TOO DAMN SHORT !!! It could have been a double disc affair and it would have been as good, if not better. It is worthy of mention to say that this album is the first album recorded entirely on digital equipment ever.

One of my favorite live albums, one of the best of the 80's and the only thing stopping me from giving this five stars is that it's a live album, therefore conhtains no new material, except for that drum solo-duet 'A Brief Case'. 4.5 stars.

Review by progrules
4 stars Funny enough this was my first encounter with Saga and it truly conquered my heart. After this I bought almost everything they realeased though I must say my enthusiasm didn't exactly rise with each new one. To me their peak lies in the beginning of their carreer.

And that's the period of this live album. This album has a great build up and the reaction of the enthusiastic audience works really nice for me. It was recorded in Germany and Saga has always been huge there. Especially the 2nd, 3rd and 4th track are real classics in Saga's live gigs of which I had the privilege to witness 5 of. So no wonder the audience goes into raptures after the 4th song. Then come 3 songs of lesser impact before the album closes down with two classics again.

Terrific live album by Saga deserving 4 stars easily.

Review by friso
4 stars Saga from Canada is crossover prog group (bordering neo-progressive) that would be embraced by the prog community for keeping parts of the dream alive in the eighties. From this period the debut album, 'Silent Knight' and 'Worlds Apart' are considered to be the most progressive albums. Saga fully embraced the eighties sound and would equip their symphonic rock songs with solid rhythms, great sounding synths loops and catchy refrains. The band would also add plenty of melodic interludes and extended solo sections with a unique guitar & keyboard interplay. The band has a nice broad live sound, probably well enhanced by the fact that they had three band-members playing keyboards & synths. The track-listing of this live LP could hardly have been improved upon and all songs are performed at least as well as on their studio recordings. Some of these guitar solo's by Ian Crichton are just wonderful. Though Saga suffers from a dated eighties wave-rock drive, with repeated listening it does start to make sense eventually. Michael Sadler had a good live voice and his slightly operatic vocals cut well through the mix. Even groups that are considered to be much better than Saga don't always make a live LP this good.
Review by Rune2000
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars I'm still puzzled as to why I chose this album as my introduction to Saga. This idea gets even more confusion considering that In Transit is a live album. Yes, it contains many of the so-called hits but why then not pick a compilation? Anyway...

The live album has some catchy songs but nothing that gives me a feeling that I would actually be interested in hearing any of the studio releases. Don't Be Late and You're Not Alone are two very strong '80s-flavored rock compositions but besides the cheerful fans who sing along to these choruses I doubt that fans of progressive rock would have much to gain by hearing this or any other Saga recording.

This is definitely not the best introduction to Saga and their music but if you are a fan then you will definitely find a lot of pleasure by hearing some of your favorite Saga compositions performed in such a joyful setting. Therefor I consider it fair to rate it as a collectors/fans only release.

**** star songs: Don't Be Late (6:20) Wind Him Up (5:48) You're Not Alone (5:48)

*** star songs: Careful Where You Step (4:32) Humble Stance (6:02) How Long (3:47) No Regrets (4:21) A Brief Case (2:13) On The Loose (5:21)

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
4 stars A brief but solid case

Hearing this classic live album for the first time after having reviewed all the studio albums by Saga (with the sole exception of Steel Umbrellas that I haven't managed to find yet) was a very pleasant surprise. Even though this live album fails to include all of the best and most progressive songs from Saga's first four studio albums, it does succeed in leaving out the bad ones that plagued some of those albums. The set list here is admittedly very short, but runs like something of a greatest hits collection with such all-time Saga classics as Don't Be Late, Humble Stance, Wind Him Up, How Long and On The Loose. Indeed, all of the eight songs featured on this live recording (the cleverly titled A Brief Case is a short drum solo) are just simply great and these live recordings are consistently better than their studio counterparts. No Regrets is the only ballad included here and it is a rather untypical Saga song as it does not have Michael Sadler on lead vocals but Jim Gilmour who also plays the clarinet in the song.

What makes this live album stand out is that compared to the studio versions, there is more energy, passion and punch in these live versions. The band is simply on fire here! The recording is very polished and if it wasn't for the very discrete audience noise, one could easily mistake this for a studio recording. I'm reminded slightly of Judas Priest's controversial Unleashed In The East live album. As I mentioned above, these songs are perhaps not the most progressive songs from the first four Saga albums, but I would still say that In Transit is a very good introduction to early Saga and generally better than the studio albums from which the selections were taken.

Highly recommended!

Latest members reviews

3 stars The test of time. This was one of my favorite live album for over twenty years. I picked it up again just recently to see if it has survived the test of time. The answer Saga was in my world one of the very few prog rock bands I was listening too. I was more into the like of ... (read more)

Report this review (#188155) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Thursday, November 6, 2008 | Review Permanlink

4 stars A SAGA IN TRANSIT Apparentely a great Neo Prog live "In Transit" is also a great Classic Metal album. The mix of this two elements are the Class Metal ingredients (see "Magnum"). For sure this live album is good for a great Prog moments. But also for metallers Saga is an interesting band. But ... (read more)

Report this review (#146196) | Posted by Lady In Black | Sunday, October 21, 2007 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Here's another epic live album - so good that it's better than the studio versions. The sound is just so big and clean, the playing is so tight, and the atmosphere so thick... This is surely one of rock's most glorious moments, right up there with Seconds Out, Exit Stage Left, Yessongs and Wel ... (read more)

Report this review (#17573) | Posted by EMinkovitch | Tuesday, May 10, 2005 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Recorded in Live in Denmark on the 1981 World's Apart tour this is a good example of the band in concert just after gaining popularity on FM radio. They reproduce the music effectively in a live environment and it is very well recieved by the somewhat more demanding European audience. On The Loos ... (read more)

Report this review (#17568) | Posted by Vibrationbaby | Sunday, November 28, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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