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A fan's delight - live Hackett through the ages
on 20 March 2002
If only all artists gave the fans exactly what they want. Four discs of live Hackett bliss only slightly let down by slightly dodgy sound quality of Disc 3 - but a classic performance that demanded release nonetheless.
Discs 1 & 2 comprise a single complete concert performance from Hammersmith Odeon 1979 - the Spectral Mornings tour - seeing a confident band reprise many of the classic songs from Steve's first three albums. Sound quality is very good and the variety of music on offer shows just why Steve Hackett live is such an experience. Good to see the crowd as enthusiastic as they are.
Disc 3 from Rome '81 is much more of a fan's feast as the sound quality may put off the casual fan. This is, however, my favorite disc as the tracks are performed with gusto and clearly the band loved every minute on stage as alluded to in Steve's accompanying notes.
Disc 4 brings us up to date with a more recent concert from 1993 and sound quality is first rate. Again a varied set with not too much repetition from the previous sets keeps interest high and if the quality of the set list isn't quite up to the 1970's/early 80's standard it is nonetheless an enjoyable listen.
I suppose I would have liked a further disc showing off Steve's acoustic guitar prowess and surely tapes from his 1983 solo acoustic tour must exist. Having said this his existing album "There are many sides to the Night" does offer a live acoustic set that most fans will already own.
A bonus to this release is the quality of the packaging and a nice touch is a full concert list from 1978 to the present. A worthy addition to Steve Hackett's back catalogue.