Top positive review
14 people found this helpful
Early live recording which is the best
on 20 February 2009
Forget the churlish comments, this live recording is certainly the best that exists of The Doors, only matched by Alive She Cried, which to my knowledge, never reached CD. It is vastly superior to the leaden release with a similar name [but fewer tracks] referred to in other reviews. There are a number of songs from the first two Doors' albums here which I've never heard played live on other records e.g. Soul Kitchen and The Crystal Ship from The Doors and from Strange Days: My Eyes Have Seen You and I Can't See Your Face In My Mind, the latter a radically different treatment, losing some of the sensuality but with an appealing flavour of The Beatles' Mr Kite, which of course The Doors couldn't have known at the time [March 1967]. Similarly the version here of Summer's Almost Gone with its emphasis on Ray Manzarek's melodic organ sound is much stronger than the version that later appeared on Morrison Hotel.
What this CD confirms is that The Doors wrote all their great songs early on, and kept on playing them! And that their first two albums contain those songs. Only at the very end, on L.A.Woman did they produce anything of comparable quality, most of which was never played live because by then Jim was dead. The versions here are fresh because although the audience is seemingly non-existent, the band itself hadn't yet swallowed the rock mythology that would later almost destroy them. It also shows how lyric-driven the band were, and yet how essential was the Manzarek/Morrison axis. Anyone who saw them at the Roundhouse in London in 1968 will remember how evocative and sensually-textured Ray's organ sound was. Hear it on this record.