Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography


The Moody Blues

Crossover Prog

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

The Moody Blues Caught Live + 5  album cover
3.12 | 66 ratings | 9 reviews | 11% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

Write a review

from partners
Live, released in 1977

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Gypsy (of a strange and distant time (4:03)
2. The sunset (4:33)
3. Dr. Livingstone, I presume? (3:23)
4. Never comes the day (5:39)
5. Peak hour (5:13)
6. Tuesday afternoon (4:51)
7. Are you sitting comfortably? (4:21)
8. The dream (0:58)
9. Have you heard? pt. 1 (1:22)
10. The voyage (3:37)
11. Have you heard? pt. 2 (2:33)
12. Nights in white satin (5:55)
13. Legend of a mind (7:05)
14. Ride my see-saw (4:28)
Studio songs
15. Gimme a little somethin' (3:13)
16. Please think about it (3:41)
17. Long Summer days (3:12)
18. King and Queen (3:52)
19. What am I doing here? (3:33)

Total Time: 75:46

Line-up / Musicians

- Justin Hayward / guitars, vocals
- John Lodge / bass guitar, vocals
- Michael Pinder / keyboards, vocals
- Ray Thomas / harmonica, flute, vocals
- Graeme Edge / drums, percussion

Releases information

London PS-683

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
Edit this entry

Buy THE MOODY BLUES Caught Live + 5 Music

THE MOODY BLUES Caught Live + 5 ratings distribution

(66 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(11%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(41%)
Good, but non-essential (30%)
Collectors/fans only (17%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

THE MOODY BLUES Caught Live + 5 reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars Nicely out of tune?

In their earlier days especially, the Moody Blues were not particularly good performing live. Their polished studio recordings, complete with excellent production work, did not translate well to the stage. Latterly, they have improved significantly ("Red Rocks" being a case in point), but "Caught live + 5" finds them struggling to do justice to the undoubted quality of the source material.

Both instrumentally, but especially vocally, the band is weak and often sounds out of tune. It's interesting that the album was only released some years after its recording, perhaps quality control had previously prevented its release.

The songs themselves are of course superb, but there's nothing different about them from their studio counterparts by way of improvisation, extension etc. Thus, why buy second rate versions, when you can have the pristine originals?

The fourth side consists of rejected studio songs from the early days of the band, hardly essential.

Review by soundsweird
4 stars As mentioned in the AMG review of this album, the group delayed the CD release of this 2- LP set until 1996 due to the fact that the performance wasn't up tp par. Specifically, some of the boys were high as kites that night! I saw them three times in the early 70's, and I can assure you that this recording is not at all representative of those shows. Which is not to say that it's a bad album. In fact, when it was remastered for CD, the sound quality was improved immensely (also mentioned in the AMG review). The LP release was muddy- sounding and served to amplify the weaknesses of the performances. Much like "Genesis Live", which on LP sounded horrible, but which on CD sounds wonderful. Of course, many of the tracks seem weak simply because they could not be reproduced live without an orchestra, or at least some extra musicians to augment the sound. As with many live rock albums, the acoustic guitar parts are played on an electric guitar, but how was Justin Hayward going to switch in the middle of a song? Yes, the recent live albums sound much better, but it's just not the same to have Joe Whozits on keyboards, and no Mike Pinder songs. Also, the track selection here is pretty good (not just another greatest hits live package). The studio tracks aren't special, but I only paid $10 for a new copy, so all in all I'd say it's a find. Incidentally, there's a DVD floating around that purports to be a live show from this period. Don't buy it, unless you like American Bandstand-style miming (see the AMG review warning readers).
Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars The band was so dissatisfied with their concert at the Royal Albert Hall on the eve of the 12th December. 1969 that the release of this concert on a double vinyl format was pushed till 1977. Maybe not the best year to bring this live album on the market.

In those days, who could be interested in such a work? The Moodies had disbanded several years ago already and the mood was not really favorable for their sweet and romantic music. Maybe a kick for the fans while awaiting their reunion album which was released a year later?

The band said that some drug abuse had limited their capabilities that night. Nonetheless, there are some good songs and enjoyable tracks of course. Mostly spread over their first three albums (since "Children" was not yet released and is only represented by one track - "Gypsy").

Highlights? "Have You Heard" (both parts), "The Voyage", "Nights In White Satin" and "Legend Of A Mind". The sound of this live recording is of course less polished, rawer, simpler than their studio albums of course.

All in all, the live set is a good represention of their hey days. But what the band had selected was too short to fill up a double album and a full side of unreleased tracks was added to complete the fourth side. Although they are not too bad, there is nothing special about these (if you want, I have described them in my review of their "Prelude" compilation).

In terms of rating, I would say that this album is average (five out of ten). I'll upgrade it to three stars.

Review by Easy Money
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars This album might be a textbook example of an album that is for fans of the group only. The live performances on here are a bit rough and the recordings aren't the best, but as a fan of this band's psychedelic period, I thought it was really interesting to hear them try to pull off their heavily overdubbed studio recordings in a live situation. This album was recorded when the Moodies were at their best; ie the four albums that run from Days of Future to Children's Children. After those four albums they slowly morphed into a decent pop band, unfortunately after they went pop much of their old psychedelic magic was gone.

One of the nice things about this album is that without all the studio sound layering you can clearly hear what great musicians many of the members of The Moody Blues are. The big surprise is drummer Graeme Edge, who usually sounds buried in the mix somewhere below the Moodies' omnipresent tambourine. As it turns out Edge can rock and he sounds surprisingly a lot like Keith Moon. The song Peak Hour in particular takes off like a rocket and wouldn't sound out of place on the punkish live Who album Live at Leeds. Guitarist Justin Hayward's more intricate finger picking and RnB inspired riffs come through in a much more forceful manner as well. On the down side, a lot of the vocals sound pretty bad, one singer in particular, I think it's Ray Thomas, can barely sing and almost talks his way through his vocals.

In addition to the live material there are also five studio songs on this album that sound like they were written when the Moodies were transitioning from being an RnB pop band to a progressive psychedelic band. Once again these songs are probably a lot more interesting to fans of the group than someone who is not familiar with them. Personally I really enjoyed hearing most of these forgotten studio songs, they are 'groovy' 60s British RnB, but with the classic Moodies psychedelic sound.

Review by Sinusoid
2 stars Nice for a Moody Blues fan to hear live versions of their favourite cuts from the first few ''classic'' Moody Blues albums. While the performances are nice, I get the feeling that the band's talents are better showcased on a studio album. The songs just don't seem to have as much life in them, and I can't feel any excitement from the band themselves when they aren't playing. Still, the live version of ''The Voyage'' is interesting to hear stripped down.

Now, the +5 means that there are five songs that were recorded in the studio but never made it onto a proper Moody Blues album. However, all 5 are terribly bland with not much to them. Heck, the vocals are rather weak and out of time on ''Please Think About It''.

This should only be of interest to hardcore Moody Blues fans.

Review by ClemofNazareth
2 stars For a couple years in the seventies this was the only Moody Blues album I owned (on 8-track no less) before I finally broke down and picked up 'In Search of the Lost Chord' and 'Days of Future Passed'. I figured by having this one, which was being sold at reduced price even when it was still new, I had much of the more well-known Moodies material without having to spend a ton of money on all eight (at the time) albums.

Imagine my surprise when I started buying the original studio releases and discovered that not only were these infinitely more interesting than this live record, but the sound quality and orchestral arrangements were far superior! I don't know if I never read the liner notes in 1977 or it just didn't register with me at the time, but I don't recall knowing this was nothing more than a 1969 concert recording that only included songs from a few of their albums along with a few outtakes. The sound quality was probably okay for me then considering I was listening to this on an 8-track tape, but hearing it now decades later I realize the quality sucked and wasn't much better than a simple soundboard recording (in fact, that's probably exactly what it was).

Anyway if you feel the need to have a live Moodies album this shouldn't be the one you look for. You can probably get it cheap and if all you want is to hear a live version of "Nights in White Satin" you'll get that, but honestly you can get that free on youTube and even have several versions to choose from (avoid the cover versions though; some of them are truly appalling). If you just want to hear the band at their live best I'd strongly recommend checking out the 'Night at Red Rocks' DVD instead, which has most of the more recognizable Moodies material, was recorded at the stellar Denver, Colorado outdoor arena known as Red Rocks, and has the band backed by a sizable symphony orchestra. You'll miss all that (not to mention the video) if you settle for the 'Caught Live +5' CD. This thing had a purpose in its day, but given the advances of both technology and the Moody Blues catalog I have to say this CD has outlived both its relevance and usefulness. Take a pass. Two stars.


Review by Einsetumadur
4 stars 12/15P. An amazingly good live document which shows the Moody Blues as a pretty snotty art rock band. Great quality, tight backing voices, crunchy guitars and loads of atmospheric mellotron frenzies throughout.

When I first listened to live recordings of The Moody Blues from the early 1980s I was amazed how mercilessly Patrick Moraz whipped the band through the concerts. This led to the situation that the keyboard work, with tons of Mellotron even on the mellotronically scarce 80s compositions, was absolutely exciting - but the pieces were played excessively fast, with big power but without lots of feeling.

But there's no need to search for the rare live 80s recordings of The Moody Blues if you want to see them perform in a somewhat rawer way. Caught Live, to me an inexplicably unpopular album, is an excellent proof of that. Especially Graeme Edge is in fine form here, a man whose drumming on Moody Blues studio albums was constantly treated with effects to create a more restrained 'percussion'-like sound.

The pieces on this album are widely known, I don't think there's a lot to talk about them. But the concrete versions of them are absolutely unexpected for everyone who's been used to the studio originals. Peak Hour is a major Mellotron orgy, mostly using the rarely heard 'Hammond organ' registration, featuring some really heavy breakdowns and the unexpectedly accurately performed double-falsetto vocal arrangements by Ray Thomas and John Lodge. I use the word 'unexpectedly' because so many critics complain about the vocals being off-key on this recording. I know that the band itself wasn't satisfied with this concert, but I don't see the reason. It ain't as mellow as the original templates, but instead it's got rock'n'roll and temperament. But if you wish to complain about the accuracy of the performance, don't search for reasons in Ray Thomas' voice - it's mostly Justin Hayward who slurs some notes a wee bit, for instance, in Never Comes The Day, which becomes a veritable folk rocker in this version thanks to the mighty sound of Hayward's Gibson hollowbody guitar. Dr. Livingstone, I Presume and Legend of A Mind shows Mike Pinder in a comically inclined mode, either induced by certain substances or by the great vibes in Royal Albert Hall, stealing the show with the gripping MkII brass fanfares and some wicked circus-style licks in between. It's notable that the Mellotron, as it frequently did, got detuned during the concert. Mike Pinder compensates the machine, masters the volume and tone regulation without any problems and even gets the most shimmering soundscapes out of that beast in this live context - for keyboarders, this is really inspiring stuff showing how this guy defined the atmosphere of this music 'simply' by choosing the fitting inversions of the chords and playing them at the correct volume.

In terms of sound this album is totally satisfying, quite comparable with the reverberated and somewhat blurry, but nonetheless differentiated sound of Barclay James Harvest's Live. The striking difference is that Caught Live works without the frequently pathetic vocal delivery and, most importantly, without John Lees' annoying double string bending which he pulls off all over the whole concert. In spite of Caught Live's increased roughness the band perfectly manages to mime the five-man-orchestra on stage as well, blurring the borders between the different instruments to create a homogenous matter of sound.

As an addition to the live concert the record also adds a bunch of studio outtakes from around 1968, songs which either didn't fit on Days of Future Passed or In Search of the Lost Chord. At first it seems a bit sloppy to just stuff some remains from the studio at the end of a live album, but - if you think about it - it's a good idea, good in its pragmatism. The concert doesn't fit on one LP, there are still some really good (!) songs in the vault, and why shouldn't such an arduous main dish be followed by a creamy dessert? I always listen this album from the beginning until the end, which is actually a good sign. Long Summer Days is a beautiful ballad by Justin Hayward which came into being before Days of Future Passed, but which already features Hayward's typical pensive lyrics on times of day or, in this case, on seasons, along with some simple but effective flute notes and full harmony vocals. No mellotron, however, just like in the soulful piano jazz ballad Please Think About It, which - along with I Really Haven't Got The Time - is another Mike Pinder song stemming from the time when the arty R&B of the Denny-Laine-led band line-up was transformed into the more symphonic sound of the Days of Future Passed era.

The 1968 tracks Gimme A Little Something, a rare John Lodge song with Justin Hayward on lead vocals, and the genuinely folky King And Queen could have gotten lost in the variegation of In Search Of The Lost Chord, but are on a similarly high artistic level. King And Queen, as well as the excellent pop elegy What Am I Doing Here?, indulge in the gloomy royal fairytale atmosphere of Are You Sitting Comfortably? with clerically arranged vocal harmonies and a lovely Mellotron flute lilting on top of this euphony. Gimme A Little Something is slightly schizophrenic between the loudly wailing chorus and the sparse folky verses which profit a lot from the gentle cascades in the vocal melody during the pre-chorus.

There's no problem about these bonus tracks - they rather add to the total content of the album instead of appearing cheap or distracting from the basic thread. All in all, the live component of Caught Live definitely floats on sweetly aromatic clouds of smoke, and in multiple colors, but nonetheless has stood the test of time very well. A definite recommendation for everyone who appreciates at least one of the early Moody Blues albums as a big masterpiece, a careful recommendation even to those who felt the band to be too soft in the studio - they're pretty rough here, and that's what you have to be prepared for if you want to get maximum inspiration and atmosphere out of this CD.

Latest members reviews

4 stars 8.5/10 Great The live parts are OK, but the bonus tracks are MUST HAVES!!! Every. Single. One. these bonus tracks absolutely blew me away when I first heard them. I was driving with my brother through town, and I can remember putting this CD on for the first time in the car and just being ... (read more)

Report this review (#170120) | Posted by The Lost Chord | Tuesday, May 6, 2008 | Review Permanlink

4 stars These are quite different Moodies than in the studio. Although imaginative soloists they are not, and the live versions do not vary from the studio counterparts as far as the very ) in the backgroundcompositons are concerned (though "Peak Hour" is stretched a bit, for good, with Edge's drums m ... (read more)

Report this review (#113911) | Posted by gero | Thursday, March 1, 2007 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of THE MOODY BLUES "Caught Live + 5 "

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.