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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect! - almost...
When i first saw this published i was very glad, it looked like a serius live cd, with lots of improvisaitions.
I bought it, and was very pleased when the first numbers came out of my speekers.
Espeacielly the fantastic improvisations by Keith Emerson overrumbbled me.
But sadly - the cd is not very stabil in its quality, and some numbers are not offering...
Published on 8 Jun 2003 by lauridsen_s

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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars For experienced completists only
This is the complete collection of the 1974/1997 live recordings plundered for innumerable budget-price compilations. This, at least, isn't a tacky and exploitative package to fleece the uninitiate - so if you need this material, THEN & NOW is the format in which to buy it. But - uninitiates beware! This is not a very satisfactory listening experience, and certainly not...
Published on 26 Feb 2005 by coca-ebola


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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars For experienced completists only, 26 Feb 2005
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coca-ebola (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Then And Now (Audio CD)
This is the complete collection of the 1974/1997 live recordings plundered for innumerable budget-price compilations. This, at least, isn't a tacky and exploitative package to fleece the uninitiate - so if you need this material, THEN & NOW is the format in which to buy it. But - uninitiates beware! This is not a very satisfactory listening experience, and certainly not the best way to discover ELP. (For that, consult either the 2-CD compilations or, better still, the debut, "the album with the bird on the cover").
Sound quality for the California Jam performance is soundboard-bootleg standard, but a bigger problem is the erratic editing. `Toccata' is lacking its theme statement - all you get is the drum-dominated second half. The mid-Take-A-Pebble piano solo is famous for being the solo that, when it was televised, alerted Oscar Peterson and Count Basie to Emerson's talents (!) It's one of the better examples of this routine, i.e not as overloaded with musical quotations as some I've heard - but the omission of the first part of the medley is cruel! As is the editing of Karn Evil 9 - even if they couldn't make room for the entire suite, why not a complete First Impression (Castle and Rhino do it on their compilations!)
Though the 1997 material is better recorded and better edited, new problems present themselves. Though rare opportunities to hear A Time And A Place and Bitches Crystal are much appreciated, Greg Lake's ageing vocal cords become a problem on well-documented material such as Lucky Man and the Karn Evil 9 excerpt. Emerson was recovering from RSI at the time of the tour and it's possible to hear him trip over his fingers at times (e.g on Hoedown and Honky Tonk Train Blues) - and his synrhesizer timbres are often ill-chosen (e.g the feeble excuse for an "upright-piano" on Honky Tonk...). But the greatest weakness by far is the improvisation - or lack thereof. Given a major solo opportunity Emerson, not for the first time, relies too heavily on musical quotations to cover for his lack of imagination (or simple boredom with overplayed songs) - as a result the Fanfare.../Blue Rondo... medley, such a highlight of late '70s shows, becomes a waste of twenty minutes in this instance.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect! - almost..., 8 Jun 2003
This review is from: Then And Now (Audio CD)
When i first saw this published i was very glad, it looked like a serius live cd, with lots of improvisaitions.
I bought it, and was very pleased when the first numbers came out of my speekers.
Espeacielly the fantastic improvisations by Keith Emerson overrumbbled me.
But sadly - the cd is not very stabil in its quality, and some numbers are not offering the sound quality they should.
But that does'nt ruin this dubbel album which is a must-have for all ELP-fans.
Buy it!
Ps. Sorry if my english is to bad... I am just an old dane...
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