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Greg Lake - Live (DVD) CD (album) cover


Greg Lake


Prog Related

3.48 | 12 ratings

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Symphonic Team
4 stars This DVD is an excellent addition to any prog collection. I was really impressed by these versions of King Crimson and ELP classics, most of them are significantly different from the originals - and several of them are actually better, or as good as the originals! Most of the material here rocks harder than ELP or King Crimson ever did - something I like.

Greg is most well known as a bass player, singer and songwriter for ELP and King Crimson. But surprisingly he plays mainly electric guitar on this concert having a hired gun to play bass for him. And Greg can really play good electric guitar. But there is a second guitarist as well, a super young talent.

Greg has a big band behind him which gives him a lot of musical power. All in all there are eight people on stage including the man himself. It takes two keyboard players to play the role of Keith Emerson here and there are female backup singers and of course a drummer. All the musicians are unknown.

Obviously, the two keyboard players here are not Keith Emerson and the super young guitarist here is not Robert Fripp, but all that is beside the point. This is an altogether different type of band. The material is almost entirely classic ELP and Crimson songs but performed differently, with a different, harder-edged sound. The strong legacy of the front man keeps this from being just a great tribute band. Greg's voice is distinctive and legendary.

Hearing these re-arranged versions of some of the ELP cuts, I cannot help thinking that this is the way ELP should have sounded! There is a lot more guitar here than on the original versions, I have somehow always felt that ELP should have had a fourth member.

The set list is full of prog classics. In The Court Of The Crimson King, Take A Pebble (with an acoustic solo section for guitarist Florian Ophale to stretch out - he is good!), 21th Century Schizoid Man, (part of) Karn Evil 9 and - the song perhaps most associated with Greg Lake - Lucky Man.

A positive surprise for me was the inclusion of some songs from Black Moon which I have always felt is an underrated ELP album. Some of Greg's best ballads ever were on that album. I particularly like Farewell To Arms that has bag-pipe- sounding keyboard solo giving it an almost folky feel.

The only songs I don't care much for here is the Christmas song I Believe In father Christmas and the generic blues rocker Love You Too Much (the title alone gives it away doesn't it?). Apparently the latter was co-written by Bod Dylan so it is somehow understandable that Greg is proud of it.

Overall, this is a great DVD

SouthSideoftheSky | 4/5 |


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