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Steve Hackett - The Total Experience Live In Liverpool CD (album) cover


Steve Hackett


Eclectic Prog

4.09 | 47 ratings

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Symphonic Team
3 stars A mixed bag

Steve Hackett has been touring relentlessly for a long time and he has been extremely prolific when it comes to releasing live albums/videos from his tours going all the way back to the late 90's with the release of The Tokyo Tapes. For the last five years or so he has been touring extensively under the concept of "Genesis Revisited" and this period alone has already spawned several live releases including Genesis Revisited: Live At Hammersmith in 2013 and Genesis Revisited: Live At The Royal Albert Hall in 2014. The most recent in this series is the present one released in 2016 entitled The Total Experience: Live In Liverpool. The "total experience" refers to the fact that about half the show is Steve Hackett solo material and the other half a straight continuation of the "Genesis revisited" concept with Nad Sylvan's convincing Peter Gabriel impersonation. Personally, I found the concept of the tour a bit confusing and separating the solo stuff from the Genesis stuff in this way only helped emphasise how different these are from each other.

The first half of the show draws material from two main sources: Steve's 1975 solo debut album, Voyage Of The Acolyte, and his latest studio release at the time, Wolflight, which explains the "from Acolyte to Wolflight" part in the name of the tour and in the subtitle of this live album. We also get here a few songs from other early solo albums like Please Don't Touch, Spectral Mornings, and Defector. Most of these songs, if not all of them, have been included on other live recent albums. As I remarked in my review of the Wolflight studio album, it sounds very much like Steve's previous albums going back at least to 2004's To Watch The Storms. It is not bad, but feels a bit like more of the same.

Turning now to the Genesis stuff, any fan of that band is bound to get interested in these selections. It is particularly nice to see that they have included a few "new" songs that were not performed on the previous couple of tours, including Get 'em Out By Friday and Can-Utility And The Coastliners from Foxtrot and The Cinema Show/Aisle Of Plenty from Selling England By The Pound. These are all excellently performed and will not disappoint anyone. Still, even with these excellent surprises I think that Steve has now come to the end of the road with the "Genesis revisited" concept. Continuing on with this beyond this point would be milking it.

The Total Experience is not a bad live album, but there are many others in Steve's extensive live catalogue that are much better than this one. (I should add that I am only familiar with the audio of this release and not the accompanying DVD. I did however see Steve live in Malmö, Sweden on this tour where the same set list was performed.)

SouthSideoftheSky | 3/5 |


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