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Renaissance - Live At Carnegie Hall CD (album) cover

LIVE AT CARNEGIE HALL

Renaissance

 

Symphonic Prog

4.26 | 225 ratings

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memowakeman
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Awesome, exquisite, superb live album!!!

Yes it is, if you ever need a taste of live symphonic prog (70s) you should go and buy yourself a copy of this outstanding album.

Normally in my reviews i left my enthusiasm until the last part of if, i mean after i actually review the album itself, but this time i can't help but sharing my love for this live acta since the very few lines, and that is because i really fell in love with it since the very first listen, it definitely caused me goosebumps and an obvious thought, it would have been awesome to attend to that concert. Renaissance was probably the first prog band with female vocals and i actually knew them with the Haslam era, then i later listened to the Relf's era but it didn't caught my attention. With Haslam, the band did not only change it's vocal style, she has an angel`s voice, she is one of my favourite singers, but the band also changed direction musically talking. What a pity the same line up changed again in the 80`s, making poor music.

What we will find in this Live at Carnegie Hall is a double CD live album, featuring some of their best (if not their best) repertoire from the first half of the 70s, compelling together more than 105 minutes of the best Renaissance performances. CD One features 6 songs, being the bautiful Carpet of the Sun the only short song with less than 4 minutes, and all the others goes from 7 to 10 minutes, believe me, pure symphonic bliss! What you have to know, is that this concert has a plus, it is not only the band's members who play here, but you will also listen to an orchestra, The New York Philarmonic Orchestra who helped the band in this amazing live act.

The concert opens very properly with that song called Prologue, what a better way of starting somethin than with a prologue, here you will have a brief taste of what their music is about, besides Annie's voice, what i love is the role that both Jon Camp on bass and John Tout on keyboards play, they are excellent musicians and what they do with their instruments gives a unique style to the band. There will be some keyboard or piano moments that will make you smile and feel comfortable while listening to it, and the bas playing is excellent i like it a lot.

Then the album continues with Ocean Gypsy which is a very representative song of the band, their classic symphonic prog style is shown here and it will caught your attention without any doubt. Can You Understand is a song i like a lot, i use to sing it and it may be catchy sometimes, but musically is a masterpiece. Next is the short Carpet of the Sun which is a very nice melody.

And to finish the first CD you will find a couple of great tracks, firstly Running Hard which was the only track i didn't know when i bought this CD, so that made me pay more attention to it, and it is an amazing song, and the last song of this first part of the concert is an absolutely favourite of mine, Mother Russia which has something that enchantes me and makes me feel surrounded by it's moods, this is the track that lasts 1o minutes and it is a perfect song to finish this first part, so odon't go anywhere, stand by and put CD Two on!!!

We already had the short ones, now let's go for the long and bigger ones! Yes sir, CD 2 contains only 2 songs but what a songs they both are monsters of progressive rock and songs that any prog lover would be amazed while listening to them.

The second part starts with an introduction of what Scheherezade is about, in that time Scheherezade and Other Stories was about to be released, so besides being an ordinary concert, they used it to promote the album. So as was said, the first of the two tracks is that long epic called Scheherezade which is flawlessly performed on stage, some people may say that the good things about a concert is to see the band playing as good as they sound on studio, Renaissance did it and in an extraordinary way. With almost half an hour of music, you will feel really excited, well actually if symphonic prog is not really your cup of tea you may find it boring, but to me that symph is my favourite genre, i find this simply awesome.

And the second track of this CD 2, and sadly last track of this live album is another of my absolutely favourite songs, Ashes Are Burning which is another very repressentavie song from the band, but this time the song was extended with several instrumental moments where the members could show their talent as self-artists, there is a moment where Jon Camp takes the moment for himself and shows what he is capable of with his bass playing. After some moments and some solos, Ashes Are Burning returns and inspire the crowd to applause and yell of joy, at the last part of the song Annie's voice reaches his best and terrific notes, it is like heaven what a voice man, i would have love to see the band live, i bet it would have been a unique and unforgettable experience.

This album remains on my top 5 live albums ever and i still remember the day i bought it, and how excited i felt. For those who love symphonic prog, hurry up and but this album, and for those who are not that eager with this genre, go and listen to it as well, it may be interesting for you.

Extraordinary, 5 star album without hesitation!

Enjoy it, and love it!

memowakeman | 5/5 |

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