Emerson, Lake and Palmer - Live At The Royal Albert Hall

Year of Release: 1993
Label: Victory Music
Catalog Number: 383 480 011-2
Format: CD
Total Time: 68:26:00

After the release of Black Moon in 1992, ELP went on tour to support the album. One of those tour stops was the Royal Albert Hall in October of that year. As you might expect, the band opened with a bit of "Karn Evil 9," as the memorable lyrics themselves seemed destined for that role. But the band launch quickly into a medley of themes from Tarkus. In fact, only three pieces from Black Moon appear on the CD, the title track, "Paper Blood" and "Romeo And Juliet" (the Emersonian take on Prokofiev's "The Dance Of The Knights," here slightly different).

The performances on Live At The Royal Albert Hall are very good, though not perfect. The sound is very, very good however, as you can hear Emerson's keyboards, Palmer's drums and Lake's bass with such clarity as to pick out individual notes. How much of the actual concert this captures I can't say, but on single disk it spans just over an hour -- an a quick hour it is, too. (Apparently the DVD of this concert features some different material, so that's some indication). Emerson seems pleasantly insane during parts of the Tarkus medley, during "Iconoclast," more so than on the studio version, as sqeaks, pips, shreaks, etc. "Knife Edge" sounds menacing at first, owing to Lake's deepend vocal tones, matched by the darker bass tones. By contrast, Emerson's keys seem much too happy... not a complaint, his tone of choice is a bright, brassy sound. And even the mentally unstable have moments of euphoria, yes? And, the song is "Knife Edge"... one can get delirously happy right before they crash (mentally). In this context, "Paper Blood" does fit in with the ELP oveure quite well. I wonder if when they were laying out the set list, they realized that both "Knife Edge" and "Paper Money" made reference to "silver wings" ... ah, they had to have ... the first lyric of "Paper Money" is "Livin' on a razor's edge / Sharper than a knife..." Anyway, I digress.

The other instrumental is the solo piano piece "Creole Dance," which is followed up by the Lake ballad "Still...You Turn Me On," here is an all acoustic guitar setting. That familiar nasally "wah-wah" is absent, making this rendering a little more intimate. But Lake's voice sounds very good... as on "Lucky Man."

The bulk of the live album is taken up by "Pirates" at 13-plus minutes (as with the original on Works, Vol 1.) and the 14-plus minute finale medley of "Fanfare For The Common Man" including "America" and "Rondo" (it is here that Emerson ends up playing his prone Hammond --keys facing him, but now opposite -- from where he has joined the audience at the edge of the stage). Not being overly familiar with the Works version of "Pirates," I can't compare the two, but I do like this rendering. Many folks seem not to like Lake's deeper voice, but I'm not one of them.

There isn't a moment where the performance lags, never a moment where you really want them to "get on with it" already (maybe a for a bit during the finale, I suppose). As I said, at an hour, this CD zips by rather quickly, the pieces they've chosen keep things moving, even during the still "Still..." It is a live CD that wears well after repeated listenings, which isn't always the case.

Reissued by Rhino in 1996 (72236)

Karn Evil 9 (1:45) / Tarkus Medley: Eruption - Stones Of Years - Iconoclast (9:33) / Knife Edge (5:27) / Paper Blood (4:10) / Romeo and Juliet (3:41) / Creole Dance (3:17) / Still...You Turn Me On (3:18) / Lucky Man (4:38) / Black Moon (6:33) / Pirates (13:23) / Finale: Fanfare For The Common Man - America - Rondo (14:41)

Keith Emerson - keyboards, Hammond organ, piano
Greg Lake - bass, guitar, vocals
Carl Palmer - drums, percussion, gong

Emerson Lake and Palmer (1970/1983/1996)
Tarkus (1971)
Pictures At An Exhibition (1972)
Trilogy (1972/198?/1996)
Brain Salad Surgery (1973/1983/1996)
Welcome Back My Friends To The Show That Never Ends (1974)
Works, Vol. 1 (1977)
Works, Vol. 2 (1977)
Love Beach (1978)
In Concert (1979)
The Best Of Emerson, Lake & Palmer (1980)
Black Moon (1992)
Live At The Royal Albert Hall (1992)
The Atlantic Years (1992)
Works Live (1993)
The Return Of The Manticore (Box set) (1993)
In The Hot Seat (1994)
The Best Of Emerson, Lake and Palmer (1994)
Classic Rock (1995)
Live At The Isle Of Wight Festival (1997)
King Biscuit Flower Hour: Greatest Hits Live (1997)
Then & Now (live) (1998)
The Very Best Of Emerson, Lake and Palmer (2000)
The Original Bootleg Series From Manticore Vaults, Volume 1 (2001/2006)
The Original Bootleg Series From Manticore Vaults, Volume 2 (2001)
Live In Poland (2001)
Show That Never Ends (2001)
Live (2002)*
Best Of The Bootlegs (2002)
Solo Anthology (2002)
The Original Bootleg Series From Manticore Vaults, Volume 3 (2002)
Live In Poland (2003)
Greatest Hits Live (2003)
An Introduction To? (2004)
Three Classic Albums (2004)
Ultimate Collection (2004)
Critical Review 1970-1992 (2005)
Bootleg Box Set (2006)
Original Bootleg Series From The Manticore Vaults, Vol 4 (2006)
Lucky Man: Best Of Emerson, Lake & Palmer (2006)
The Birth Of A Band: Isle Of Wight Festival (2006)
The Essential Emerson, Lake & Palmer (2007)
From The Beginning (CD/DVD) (2007)
Works 1 & 2 (2009)
A Time And A Place (4CD Box) (2010)
Live At The High Voltage Festival (2010)

Pictures At An Exhibition (VHS/DVD) (1970/2002)
Welcome Back (VHS/DVD) (1993/2001)
Live At The Royal Albert Hall (VHS/DVD) (1996/2001)
Works Orchestral Tour: Olympic Stadium, Montreal, 1977 (DVD) (1998)
The Manticore Special (DVD) (1998) (broadcast on TV 1973/1974)
Masters From The Vault (2004)
Live At Montreux, 1997 (DVD) (2004)
Critical Review 1970-1995 (DVD) (2005)
Beyond The Beginning (DVD) (2005)
Music In Review (DVD) (2005)
Pictures At An Exhibition - 35th Anniversary Edition (DVD) (2005)
Live Broadcasts: Collector's Rarities (DVD) (2006)
Pictures At An Exhibition - Special Edition (40th Ann. Edition) (2010)

*this is of the Isle Of Wight festival, too.

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin UK

Added: December 2nd 2002
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Artist website: www.emersonlakepalmer.com
Hits: 1400
Language: english


[ Back to Reviews Index | Post Comment ]