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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 7 February 2016
On this live compilation album, Rod Stewart shows that he deserves to be included in the list of great British singers as he ranks up there with Paul Rodgers, Roger Daltrey, Robert Plant, Ian Gillan and Jess Roden. His voice suits the rockers very well but it's also beautifully tender, soulful and passionate when needed.

The list of tracks is immense even though it probably misses out on a few of your favourites. I'd have liked to have more from his early days including "Gasoline Alley", "Maybe I'm Amazed", "I'd Rather Go Blind" and "I Wish It Would Rain". The last two were excellent on the Rod Stewart and The Faces underrated live album "Coast to Coast: Overtures and Beginners" but I seem to have lost my copy and I can't find a replacement at a reasonable cost.

The songs we get are a combination of many of his own hits and excellent cover versions. Stewart has always had great taste in choosing songs from other performers. If you like the Sam Cooke songs, look out for Cooke's "Live At The Harlem Square Club 1963" which is superb. I write a blog about the best live albums and that album is winning the poll to find the best soul live recording.

This compilation covers a number of years of Stewart performing live and there are some style changes as the years pass by:
1976 - 15 songs
1979 - 6 songs
1980 - 3 songs
1981 - 1 song
1984 - 7 songs
1989 - 9 songs
1991 - 7 songs
1993 - 8 songs
1998 - 2 songs

I think CDs 1, 2 and 4 are excellent. Great songs, fine bands and Stewart is in fine voice.

CD 3 dates from the 1980s and it has some dodgy moments due to the production styles that were popular at the time. On my iPod, I've moved it to a separate album so that these weaker songs don't spoil my enjoyment of the rest. Should that third CD cost the overall album a star? I decided that there was enough excellent material to give it 5 stars for the three CDs I listen to regularly. I ignore the other which I'd probably rate at around the 3 star level.

If you're a keen Rod Stewart fan, then this is a must have. If you are not so keen and you only want one Rod Stewart live album, I'd probably recommend Unplugged rather than this one because that's much more concise and doesn't have the sprawl of this one.

If anyone from the record company is reading this, I'd really like a similar exercise with Rod Stewart and The Faces between 1970 and 1975 and a few live recordings with the Jeff Beck Group would also be much appreciated.
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on 23 January 2015
I bought this because of the mix of classic, well-known Rod Stewart songs (that I have on other albums, but good to have them in one place) and some real hidden gems. These four discs cover a range of Rod's many different styles form the years, but are peppered with great cover versions that sets this apart from standard greatest hits fare. A few dud notes / voice squeeks as you'd probably expect from a man whose voice is unique but not exactly classically trained, but these are more than made up for by the rest of this great set. Would highly recommend for a Rod fan.
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on 6 November 2014
Having been fortunate enough to have seen Rod Stewart in countless live performances since 1978, the one thing I have learnt is that if one goes along expecting a flawless vocal performance you'll be disappointed.
The joy of seeing Rod perform live is all about the whole experience. He is a magnificent showman who always engages with his audience and sells every song as if it's the most important thing you'll ever hear.
This collection really captures the reason why so many of us keep returning, year after year, to see Rod Stewart perform. The great music, the humour, the bonhomie and general feeling of "let's have a great time and if a few mistakes creep in... what the hell" are all here in abundance.
Great stuff!
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on 6 June 2017
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on 18 March 2014
Good stuff from the greatest voice in rock history!
Inevitably the quality of some of the recordings is better than others. The audience is pretty much inaudible in the mix in some numbers - which matters when Rod and the band are virtually silent to allow the crowd to let rip! Personally , I favour the stuff from the 70's and early 80's when the band was still clearly a rock band playing it proud and loud! As the decades roll on the performances get more polished - and Rod's voice amazingly gets stronger and more consistent - but the manic energy of the 70's gigs is missing. If you are a Rod fan you have to own this set - it will fill the empty days until he tours in a few months time!
One issue : why doesn't the record company release something similar on DVD? any Rod fan knows that hearing the gig is only half the story - the stagecraft of the man has to be seen in order to get the full Rod experience .
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on 4 October 2015
Rod Stewart live is an experience, that experience is well documented on the absolutely live album. On this one it is occasionaly there but certainly not all the time. It is good but somtimes the production is too far behind the energy of the performance. Save up the money and go and see the real deal.
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I am pleasantly surprised at the quality of these live performances. One track really stood out for me on disc 2, 'If Loving You Is Wrong, I Don't Want To Be Right' must be one of the best vocal performances I have heard from Rod Stewart ever, the man puts in an incredible effort that really stood out as I was hearing this box set.
There are even a few great blues songs such as a Muddy Waters cover. This is a great collection of some of the best live recordings Rod has recorded and performed over a 20 year period. Lots of rock and roll songs and a few of his classic ballads, it's all here, even a few Faces classics.
This set compliments the previous box - The Rod Stewart Sessions 1971-1998
The only gripe is the very ordinary booklet included with just the bare minimum info.
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on 17 March 2014
It not really so easy to review a box set on first listen, but here goes anyway.Any fan will already know most of the songs and Rod is still widely rated as one of the best live acts on the scene, all the hits are here. With 58 songs covering Rod's live rock era before he took a decade break to record the American song book albums and a few slightly iffy covers albums.
Of the Highlight tracks here include "Forever Young" "Sailing" "Every Picture tells a story" "Stay with me" twice(overkill really but recorded 16 years apart). Cover versions of Bruce Springsteen's "Hungry Heart" which is OK if not a patch on the original. There is a great version of "Baby please don't go" possibly made more Famous by Van Morrison in Them. Some songs work better than others but there is a lot of good stuff here for any fan.

Overall is a bargain at under £20 for 58 songs, get it to go with your other boxsets.
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on 23 June 2014
Great live album from Rod's best performances over the years, definitely worth getting if you are a fan of his. Well worth the money.
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on 25 June 2014
This box set covering 4 CDs and a variety of concerts is just fantastic. Yes some tracks are repeated but hey who cares. Sound quality is excellent and a good selection of songs covering a spectrum of styles is wonderful..what a cover of Bruce Springsteen's Hungry Heart is worth the money alone. I am not even going to criticise that we don not get a full show from each venue as it is such good value for money. Keep on rocking Rod.
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