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Chicago - Chicago at Carnegie Hall CD (album) cover

CHICAGO AT CARNEGIE HALL

Chicago

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.07 | 50 ratings

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Glimpse
4 stars Chicago's first live album, Chicago At Carnegie Hall, from 1971 seems to have developed quite the reputation among fans of the group. With many people lambasting it as an overblown, being nearly three hours in duration, and having subpar sound quality. However, after recently picking up this box-set from a local vendor, I would have to disagree with these claims. The sound quality is far from poor, sure it isn't perfect but it is highly listenable even on the original vinyl release and it has also been improved on recent CD reissues.

As for the duration, it can be quite the endurance test for those not truly prepared to sit down for a whole four LP set, it does provide quite an immersive experience as it contains not only the songs the listener is already familiar with but tune-ups and even some crowd interactions as well. Of course, some people might find these sorts of things to be a tad on the excessive side, it does help to give you that full live show experience.

As for the set list on this album, it's about par the course for early 70s Chicago. You'll only find material from the groups first three albums here, with most of them being pulled from the groups first two albums. Most of the songs are faithful to their studio counterparts with some minor variation, but you'll also find a bit of improvisation and soloing here and there.

Overall it's an album that I feel gets a lot more hate than it really deserves, sure it's not quite as good as it could be, but that's not really the point here. Expecting perfection from a live album is always a silly prospect, as if that's what you want then just stick with the studio albums. While for those of you interested in an immersive and exensive live document you'll be certain to get what you're looking for here.

Glimpse | 4/5 |

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