Emerson, Lake and Palmer - Welcome Back

Year of Release: 1997
Label: Image Entertainment
Catalog Number: ID9700CLDVD
Format: DVD
Total Time: 80:00:00

The blurb on the back of Welcome Back is misleading: "a musical biography outlining the birth and rebirth of a supergroup..." Not quite. Filmed during the Black Moon tour in 1992 (an album I know Emerson, Lake and Palmer fans love to hate, but I rather like it), the band reflect on concert performances past, including The Isle Of Wight festival, their historic performance at Montreal's Olympic Stadium in 1977, and a date they played in Italy fraught with mishaps, among others. Footage of these various festivals underscores Emerson, Lake and Palmer's recollections. There is even footage of Emerson being rotated whilst seated at his grand piano, this accompanying his recollection of it at the California Jam. This is interspersed with then recent footage of the trio playing in Verona, Italy and at the Royal Albert Hall (from which a live CD was recorded and released). One even gets the video for "Black Moon," though I'm still not sure why the setting is a quarry ... except by taking the metaphor of destroying the planet...

I must admit that prior to 1992's Black Moon release, my ELP knowledge was basically limited to "Lucky Man" and "Karn Evil 9," classic rock radio staples, of course. It was the Black Moon album, and my growing interest in prog rock music, that lead me back to Tarkus, Brain Salad Surgery, etc. And like many long-time ELP fans, I, too, found In The Hot Seat disappointing. So, I had an additional interest in seeing this DVD, wanting to become acquainted with the band. Based on that blurb, this seemed like the perfect entré.

Though the blurb is not quite accurate, it is, nevertheless, an interesting documentary. Listening to the trio talk about their career in terms of these various live performances does give you insight into the band. Seeing the footage from 1977 and comparing it to 1992, one sees that Emerson and Palmer haven't changed all that much, just looking 25 years older... Lake did get a little fuller, but his voice sounds as good as it ever did. One other thing I did notice is that each seemed to truly enjoy making music, most certainly Emerson. Based on the interviews here, one gets the sense that Emerson wanted to keep heading in a progressive direction (that'd be progressive in dictionary terms), while Lake wanted to head in a more commercial direction. Hard to say about Palmer... They don't really discuss that specifically in terms of the band, but more in terms of their personal musical direction... which implies the band. One also gets a peek into what it took to put on an ELP show, as we see the band backstage at various points, readying themselves. The classic footage is definitely a boon for those of us too young to have seen ELP live in their heyday (I was 11 when what had been their last studio album, Love Beach, was released in 1978 ... ).

While a complete concert is not really included, various pieces of ELP music are included from all points in their career, including a 77/92 version of "Fanfare For The Common Man" which closes the DVD. In both instances, Emerson manhandles and topples his organ ... the musical instrument, that is... and we see him in the 1992 Royal Albert Hall footage playing from the audience while the organ is upside down...well, lying on its back, as it were... all this while being nearly mauled by the audience. Also included is part of a video filmed for "Honky Tonk Train Blues," which, as Emerson relates, was used for a TV show in Italy.

But, don't let me spoil it for you by telling you everything. I will add, however, that there are no bonus features with this disk. But, I thoroughly enjoyed watching the DVD. The trio may not like each other, but they do come across as three very likeable guys.

Songs included: Romeo & Juliet / Karn Evil 9: 1st Impression - Part 2 / Pictures At An Exhibition / Paper Blood / Honky Tonk Train Blues / Creole Dance / Changing States/Hoedown / Black Moon / Tarkus / Pirates / C'est La Vie / Tiger In A Spotlight / Watching Over You / Lucky Man / Maple Leaf Rag (Joplin) / Fanfare For The Common Man

Keith Emerson - keyboards
Greg Lake - bass, guitar, vocals
Carl Palmer - drums and percussion

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.emersonlakeandpalmer.com
Hits: 1115
Language: english


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