This is a very fine live album, recorded at The Barbican in London in October 2012 to mark 25 years since the release of Solitude Standing. Suzanne Vega sings every song from that classic in the order they appeared on the album, plus several others (including a fine version of Marlene On The Wall). It's a great set, which she and the band do really well.
Suzanne Vega's voice has matured and become slightly deeper and more husky over a quarter of a century and if anything I prefer it now. It gives her often melancholy and atmospheric songs extra depth, and after all her experience of performing she can really put the songs over fantastically. Every track, even the ones that aren't true classics, has real meaning here and even the incredibly familiar, like Gypsy for example, are still genuinely affecting and she is absolutely spellbinding in Tom's Diner. It's a proper live album, without a lot of auto-tune or other airbrushing and Vega doesn't quite hit the occasional note bang in the middle (quite noticeable in Luka and Marlene On The Wall) but I really like that - it's a real performance and this only adds to its genuineness, I think.
The band are excellent and the sound is sort of half-way between the original rich, 80s production and the recent magnificent, stripped down Close-Up albums. There are some amusing and warm anecdotes between songs and appreciative audience reaction, giving the atmosphere of a live concert very well.
I have loved Suzanne Vega's music for many, many years, and genuinely think she is one of the great, original singer-songwriters of the last 30 years. This is a great record of her in concert. I should love to have been there, but this is the next best thing. Very warmly recommended.