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The Flower Kings - Meet The Flower Kings @ Live Recording 2003 CD (album) cover


The Flower Kings


Symphonic Prog

4.16 | 141 ratings

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Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer
4 stars I really don´t know why I haven´t written a review about this one until now. I have this double DVD package (with two live CDs) since 2003 and I must say i loved it from the first few seconds I saw them playing the opening epic The Truth Will Set You Free. What a great musicianship! And who in the world would start a show by performing a 30+ minute opus? It is ok that those performed were specially staged (the audience is very small and it is obvious that a few overdubs were done). Still, they play live and very well. Some insertions of images of a couple dancing give a nice visual touch and since they were used only in short passages they don´t interfere too much on the group´s performance and the live feel of the DVD.

To me the major flaw on Meet The Flower Kings is the fact that a lot of the DVD time was spent on those home movies showing them traveling around (including Brazil) between the songs. I guess it would be alright to have those images as extras, and in a briefer version, giving them the chance to record more songs, specially the shorter ones (they only perform the epics here). However, the fact that we have a complete show of terrific (and hard to play) tunes like Stardust We Are, Garden Of Dreams (this one played in two parts), Humanizzimo (from Stolt´s solo album The Flower King) and the aforementioned The Truth.... make watching this show a one of a kind experience. I really doubt if they will ever repeat such enterprise. With the sole exception of the jam/chaotic-like style of Circus Brimstone, all songs are very well chosen.

The big surprise here was the rather discreet presence of Pain Of Salvation´s leader/guitarrist/songwriter Daniel Gildenlöw. He was a guest on TFK´s Unfold The Future but I wasn´t expecting such celebrated and important figure from the prog metal scene like him to take a back seat on a tour with any other band, much less the Flower Kings. And - believe it or not - he seems a little subdue under the performances of such monster players like Jonas Reingold (bass) and Tomas Bodin (keyboards). Not to mention Roine Stolt´s brilliant guitar lines and the excellent drumming of then newcomer Zoltan Czörsz. It is always a pleasure to see such talented and gifted musicians having a ball playing those long and complex epics.

I always regarded The Flower Kings as probably the single most important prog band to emerge from the 90´s. And seeing them live only proved them to be as good on stage as they are in the studio. For any symphonic prog lover, this is a must have.

Rating: somewhere between 4 and 4,5 stars. Maybe not the definitive TFK DVD, but excellent anyway.

Tarcisio Moura | 4/5 |


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