365 Albums In One Year

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
352/365

13 - Black Sabbath
Format: CD/Digital

A dark thundering bass and guitar riff introduces the final album from Black Sabbath, The End Of The Beginning opens up the bands 18th album, the opening lines are spoken from a questioning standpoint and then Ozzy reveals a more appropriate title for the song being the Beginning of the End. Tony's guitar sounds sinister and smashes away, the song lyrically pertains to the perceived over-advancement of technology in some areas, such as cloning and even hologram lead concerts, which seems to be a bit of a stab at the coming Dio hologram if you ask me. Musically pretty strong but as a whole the song isn't absolutely amazing, not bad for a band that hadn't released new music in over 10 years. Tony sounds pretty great. God Is Dead? comes up next, continuing on the dark approach as only Sabbath can truly do to this level, Ozzy sounds pretty good despite myself not being the biggest fan of his vocals overall, the track does back off for a little while it comes back in and Ozzy sings in a pondering manner as if he really searching for the answer to the question that the title is, there are some pretty strong moments in the track but I find it goes on a little too long. Loner comes in, a shorter track which Ozzy begins to sound more similar to the band's earlier work on from the start, the groove established by Tony and Geezer is quite strong, I could see it being a pretty good live track, not too fast to feel unnatural among Sabbaths doom laden setlists. Zeitgeist opens with the sounds of laughter before some acoustic guitar comes in, Ozzy is very distorted off the start, the track is really mellow and feels like an odd trip of sorts, not the greatest addition to the album, and the placement seems weird, having just gone through 3 strong mid-paced tracks to shift into a slow and stripped back track just doesn't make a ton of sense. Age Of Reason soon establishes that the previous track's style won't be staying, another lengthier track. A step back into the right direction, there is an ominous choir like sound in the background and the song is benefited from it, roughly halfway through the song it picks up a little more in terms of pacing and the song gets heavier with this increased pace. Live Forever features a similar introduction to The End Of The Beginning dark and doom laden, before picking up the pace a little bit making this the fastest track thus far on the album, the track takes a fairly typical Sabbath approach to it, and Ozzy sounds pretty strong on the track, his vocals as a whole don't sound like he has aged that much since the 70s although he isn't singing as high, his voice remains clear and powerful, I think the vocals here are most similar to Fairies Wear Boots. Damaged Soul is the penultimate track, Ozzy sings about a graveyard. The song isn't the most engaging and does go on for some time. Dear Father closes off the album, a fitting end to the album, not amazing but a decent listen. Not the greatest but definitely a fine way to end a career.

The End Of The Beginning -8.5/10
God Is Dead? - 8/10
Loner - 8.5/10
Zeitgeist - 6.5/10
Age Of Reason - 8/10
Live Forever - 8.5/10
Damaged Soul - 7/10
Dear Father -7.5/10

Overall 78%

And with that 13 albums remain
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
353/365

Live Era 87-93 - Guns N Roses
Format: CD/Digital

Inital Thoughts: Where is CIVIL WAR?!?! Other than that the setlist is pretty much all of what one would expect from this set, Coma as a bonus track would have been cool to acquire - 9/10

Guns N Roses, kicks off their live album with concert opener Nightrain, like most of the tracks it was culled from their 1992 leg of their famous Use Your Illusion tour. Axl sounds pretty decent, his vocals are so unique and full of rasp throughout this era, his high notes are powerful and his low voice has a fair bit of nature rasp to it. Slash delivers on the guitar, Duff's bass is audible among the thunder of Matt's drums. A smart higher energy opening track. Mr Brownstone is up next, a track which rarely has moved from the second spot in the setlist, a Axl uses a deeper voice on this track it really works quite well throughout. Groove filled and well performed. The Appetite introduction continues with It's So Easy and it begins with a little rant from Axl about the crowd drinking and getting injured, a smart choice for including this, the strong bass introduction just screams a fun time is about to happen. Duff and Axl harmonize on the track a fair bit, one of my favourite GNR tracks and an amazing live track, I personally think Axl sounds better on it now than he does on this recording but he still does a great energetic performance of the track, and another example of just how strong their debut album is. Welcome To The Jungle is up next, the classic Do You Know Where You Are introduction works wonders, so raspy throughout. I think Axl has really hit his stride at this point and wow can Slash play. Dust N Bones slows down a bit but is the first track from the Use Your Illusion records to be played, a track which I'm not the biggest fan of but this rendition is fairly enjoyable an upbeat approach with some punch to it, Izzy takes lead vocals on the track and personally he isn't nearly as strong as Axl but then again if Axl gets a break it means more songs as a whole so I'm fine with that. My Michelle comes back in again, the energy behind these Appetite tracks really shows why they have been concert staples for the bands entire career, a quick and direct rocker which really delivers in the live setting. A slowed version of You're Crazy is up next, the song totally feels like The Seeker which is a track the band has been covering, a great rendition, not a huge You're Crazy fan but wow is it a great live track and super fun throughout. Speaking of a fun track Used To Love Her, is up next, the silly track does well with a bit of an electric element to it, catchy as all hell and silly beyond belief. The band really comes together on this track. The bands first big ballad Patience comes up next, completing the tracks from GNR Lies that will be played at the concert, Axl sounds downright amazing on this track his clean voice so powerful and the simplistic arrangement of the track allows the band to shine complimenting Axl incredibly, the crowd is going crazy throughout cheering loudly throughout the track. A piano cover of Black Sabbath's It's Alright serves as the introduction to November Rain, a nice and short cover, it is just Axl and his piano throughout. An interesting choice that is for sure. November Rain closes off disc one, an extended piano based introduction is added to the track, which does go on for a little too long considering the previous track could have easily served as the introduction. Once the introduction is over the track comes in beautifully, the bands additional players really adding emphasis to the monstrous ballad, Slash's playing is magnificent throughout the track, his many little solos played perfectly and full of emotion.

Out Ta Get Me is the sole recording from the 80s to make it onto the album and the concert picks up in tempo after having been slowed down for a while considering the extended November Rain followed Patience and It's Alright. Rasp filled and aggressive, punchy and strong throughout the song has a lot of energy and was a good choice of track to get the energy back up. Pretty Tied Up is the first of the Use Your Illusion II tracks to be featured on the album, another of the bands more odd tracks, mid tempo with some rather clear lyrical themes regarding bondage and other sexual preferences... A decent track done pretty well overall. Yesterdays is up next, a solid ballad, the song is calm and pleasant and well delivered with Axl's rasp really suiting the track much more than a clean voice he uses now a days on it. Move To The City comes in extended to an 8 minute runtime, the track would have been interesting to get a proper studio version of at some point, the big band feel is back with this track, a fun track which works well in both electric and acoustic renditions, the track has an extended midsection in which the band gets their chance to really shine and extends into the outro. You Could Be Mine comes up next, the introduction got a really strong reaction from the crowd. Axl sounds great throughout on a track which really requires the rasp to truly be effective. He nails the bridge with an absolutely amazing vocal performance throughout it. Rocket Queen opens up and Slash actually speaks to the crowd, another track which requires a fair bit of rasp to properly pull off live, Slash takes a talkbox solo in the middle of the track which allows Duff's bass work to shine more throughout not being covered up by his guitars, I personally find this version as a whole not the most amazing, although the outro is done quite well. Sweet Child O Mine comes in, this version isn't quite as raspy as the Tokyo show but personally the cleaner approach really suits this track better as a whole. The ever present cover of Bob Dylan's Knockin' On Heaven's Door comes up next to close out the main set of the show like it did on many shows on this tour. A pretty good rendition, seems odd to close off the main set with a cover track, well performed and there is some crowd participation during it. Don't Cry opens the encore, one of the bands radio staples, Don't Cry is a great piece of music and the backing singers really add to the power of the track throughout the track. Another phenomenal choice and performance. Estranged is from the live at Tokyo show, a well performed rendition of an incredibly dark track, Axl introduces the song in a really light manner despite the dark message he is conveying, performance wise he delivers a strong emotional performance of the bands darkest ballad. Paradise City closes out the show, the song's introduction really brings the energy back into the crowd, the synths sound pretty good and the band sounds great, a great choice in closer.

Nightrain - 9/10
Mr. Brownstone - 9/10
It's So Easy - 9/10
Welcome To The Jungle - 10/10
Dust N Bones - 8/10
My Michelle - 9/10
You're Crazy - 10/10
Used To Love Her - 10/10
Patience - 10/10
Its Alright - 8/10
November Rain - 10/10

Out Ta Get Me - 9/10
Pretty Tied Up - 8/10
Yesterdays - 8/10
Move To The City - 9/10
You Could Be Mine -10/10
Rocket Queen - 8.5/10
Sweet Child O Mine - 9/10
Knockin On Heavens Door - 8.5/10
Don't Cry - 10/10
Estranged - 10/10
Paradise City - 9/10

Flow - The show flows pretty well overall, a lower point in terms of energy comes at the end of disc one, and then again near the end of disc two. - 9/10

Final Thoughts - Still wondering where Civil War was and why some more odd choices were added but oh well it was a pretty darn good show. - 9/10

Overall 91%
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
354/365

Feedback - Rush
Format: Vinyl

Side 1: Summertime Blues/Heart Full Of Soul/For What Its Worth/The Seeker
Rush's cover EP opens up with Summertime Blues a song by Eddie Cochran and also featured one The Who's Live At Leeds a, the band comes in strong and remains faithful to the original, incredible instrumentation throughout as one would expect from the power trio. Geddy sounds commanding both vocally and on his bass, Alex plays smoothly while Neil powers on with his mighty drumkit. An excellent cover. Heart Full Of Soul by The Yardbirds is up next, Geddy sings so softly and calmly as the band pulls back a little bit before picking up a little bit and the song takes a more bluesy approach, the band's harmonies sound quite good and very reminiscent of the 60s and early 70s lighter rock scene. For What Its Worth by Buffalo Springfield is up next, a Canadian band, like the previous track this takes a more pulled back approach and I think the band really has it come together here, the song has an air of caution to it, while some mystery remains around them as they perform this anti-war track. Side One closes out with The Seeker, the introduction riff comes in hard and clear, the production on this album thus far has been amazing, and while I love The Who's version of this track the added level of heaviness from the more modern approach by Rush really makes the track incredibly strong and potent. The track is brilliant, an excellent groove a great tribute.

Summertime Blues - 9/10
Heart Full Of Soul - 8/10
For What Its Worth - 8.5/10
The Seeker - 10/10
Side 1 - 35.5/40

Side 2: Mr. Soul/Seven And Seven Is/Shapes Of Things/Crossroads
Side 2 begins with Mr. Soul another Buffalo Springfield track, the opening lyrics make it feel quite familiar to me, a nice groove is present throughout but the track isn't quite on par with the rest of the ones on the album thus far. Clearly Rush were heavily influenced by the band since they opted to cover them twice on the EP among some pretty large and notable bands. Seven And Seven Is by and band called Love it has a gallop to it and kicks off incredibly quick. Vocally the song feels rushed, while the instrumentation is powerful and aggressive. If Geddy sounded stronger I think this song would click quite well but he just feels like he is trying to play catch up throughout the track. Shapes Of Things another Yardbirds track is up next it comes in quick before becoming a good midpaced rocker. Once again the band sounds very much embodying the sound of the 60s and 70s. Dare I say they sound like the Beatles vocally in some places, and unlike previous times I mean that in a positive way. Crossroads closes out the EP, Alex sounds incredibly bluesy throughout the track, killer drumwork from Neil and wow does Geddy sing beautifully throughout the track an incredible track.

Mr. Soul - 7/10
Seven And Seven Is - 7.5/10
Shapes Of Things - 8/10
Crossroads - 10/10
Side 2 - 32.5/40

Overall 85%
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
355/365

Unplugged - Alice In Chains
Format: CD/Digital

Initial Thoughts: AIC's famous unplugged setlist, a pretty strong setlist overall pulling from all 5 of their releases at the time. It looks well thought out. - 10/10

Alice In Chains open up their famous MTV Unplugged appearance with Nutshell, the crowd cheers as they take the stage, and kick into the acoustic introduction of the somber track, the acoustic introduction is beautiful and full of sorrow, Layne sounds in pain, and conveys the dark emotions of the track from the start, a haunting way to open up the live album. Dark and sad, it sets the tone for the concert. Brother is up next, a track from the band's Sap ep which is the only Alice In Chains release I haven't heard before so this version will be the first I've gotten to hear. The a song sung by Jerry for his brother, the track continues on the dark and more somber approach, the atmosphere of the show allowing the band to truly just how incredibly sad and dark their songs can be. A pretty good track but it doesn't come close to being as haunting as Nutshell does to me. No Excuses is up next, another track from the Jar Of Flies EP, full of harmonies from the start and the track's more upbeat nature adds a little bit of positive energy into the show. Another no brainer choice for the show, the song is played essentially the same as the original. Sludge Factory is up next, the song sounds quite heavy throughout. The song continues the somber feeling from the previous tracks, Down In A Hole from Dirt is up next, another excellent song choice, Layne continues to sound incredibly pained and his raw emotion is conveyed excellently. The track being mostly acoustic originally allows it to shift excellently into this fully acoustic rendition, well done throughout. Angry Chair is up next, continuing on the Dirt tracks of which there are a couple more to come down the pipe. Vocals sound droning and ominous in a way; the anger behind the track feels absent for the most part. Rooster comes up next, one of the bands most well known tracks, the introduction is even more pulled back than the original and it becomes quite haunting as Layne comes in on vocals. The track tries to explode into the full blown rock epic it is normally played as but the acoustic instruments holds it back down low where the bass thunders very evidently throughout. The chorus gets so built up but the lack of explosion really falls a little short in my mind of being perfection. The emotions throughout are quite strong. Got Me Wrong another track off of Sap comes in next. The track continues with the overall feelings from the previous tracks. A dark concert thus far that is for sure. Heaven Beside You from the bands Self Titled album comes in following the introduction of a guest musician. This track works better acoustically than on its rendition on the original album. More emotional and better conveyed in this format. Would? is up next, an interesting choice as it is the first outright full blown rocker being played thus far in the evening. The bass work on the introduction is great a pretty good shift, similar to Rooster it works but it lacks something to make it really work, although the upbeat rendition does help keep a listener engaged instead of just being slower tracks after slower track. Frogs is next, building up it is the longest track on the record. A the track didn't click for me on the album and it isn't clicking here, long and slow the track has a lot of atmosphere to it but as a whole it is lacking energy. Over Now another lengthy track from the bands self titled third album, it comes in with more energy in the start than Frogs had in its entire runtime. Pretty good, not amazing but the track does get the album back on track so to speak. Killer Is Me closes out the show. A new song performed for the first time, it is a pretty decent track overall which does a good job closing out the album

Nutshell - 10/10
Brother - 8/10
No Excuses - 10/10
Sludge Factory - 8.5/10
Down In A Hole - 9/10
Angry Chair - 8/10
Rooster - 9/10
Got Me Wrong - 8.5/10
Heaven Beside You - 8.5/10
Would? - 9/10
Frogs - 7/10
Over Now - 8/10
Killer Is me - 7.5/10

Flow - The show plays without breaks, the songs are all acoustic but there is a good shift between slow and midtempo. - 9/10

Final Thoughts - Some songs don't quite work the best but overall a really good album. - 9/10

Overall 87%
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
356/365

The Neon God: Part 1 - The Rise - W.A.S.P.
Format: Digital

The band's first concept record since The Crimson Idol opens up with an Overture, the bands 11th album in their career 20 year career. It slowly builds and the band delivers a nice instrumental piece this would have been another cool example of a show opener coming in with an instrumental piece either prerecorded or performing it building up the suspense. It shifts into a more pulled back approach for a brief moment about two thirds through before picking up and segueing into the next track. Why Am I Here is a short 30 second track which is acoustically played and Blackie sings nicely it however should have just been part of the Overture. Wishing Well takes a more traditional WASP approach. It is a direct rocker and despite being over 10 years since the bands masterpiece Blackie doesn't sound like he has aged that much in the time since The Crimson Idol direct throughout. A pretty good track. Sister Sadie is up next, the longest track on the album spanning close to 8 minutes in length, it builds up with a pretty quick tempo, the lyrics really are starting to show Blackie's religious beliefs sneaking into them and they add a lot of context and fits with the themes of the album's concept and the track as a whole is pretty good, not on par with their earlier masterpieces but it shows moments of brilliance such as the solo section. There is a call back to Chainsaw Charlie in the outro's approach. The Rise is up next a short piece with some big band aspects to it, Blackie absolutely wails on this track and it serves more to build the storyline some more but it is a nice little piece of music. Why Am I Nothing is up next, and it serves mostly as an introduction into the absolutely brutal Asylum #9, a furious rocker with easily the best overall performance of the album thus far by all members of the band lengthy screams fill the chorus and Blackie shows that he still is an absolute monster vocallist, halfway through the track it pulls back giving the listner a brief chance to digest the rocking before Darrel Roberts launches into his lead solo. A masterpiece. The Red Room Of The Rising Sun is quite the mouthful to sing but Blackie does it anyways. The track continues to be well thought out and interconnected into the story, quite well done. What I'll Never Find slows down becoming an emotional ballad, building, there is something lacking but the track does come together quite well, I think more emotion in the vocals is what is needed, the playing from the band is very well done for the ballad and it does a good job throughout but it just that little bit more pain from Blackie. Someone To Love (All I Need) has the emotions from Blackie that were lacking on the previous track, his softer vocal approach is chilling and serves as a nice closer to the ballad. X.T.C. Riders picks the pace back up and begins to launch into a strong punchy rocker, plenty of wailing throughout, high energy and of good quality rocking, the outro solo is quite well thought out. Me & The Devil is another short interlude before The Running Man. A track which also is a more direct upbeat rocker, the wailing is here and while it works there is some layering done throughout the album which makes them come across less clear than they should be personally, but aside from that the track is another higher quality rocker which begs the question Why weren't/aren't WASP bigger in North America? The Raging Storm closes off the album, a slower track which closes off the album in epic fashion, brutal wails full of emotion throughout.

Overture/Why Am I Here - 8/10
Wishing Well - 8/10
Sister Sadie (And Black Habits) - 9/10
The Rise - 8.5/10
Why Am I Nothing/Asylum #9 - 10/10
The Red Room Of The Rising Sun - 8.5/10
What I'll Never Find/Someone To Love Me (All I Need) - 9.5/10
X.T.C. Riders - 9/10
Me & The Devil/The Running Man - 9/10
The Raging Storm - 10/10

Overall 89%
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
357/365

The Neon God: Part 2 - The Demise - W.A.S.P.
Format: Digital

The second part opens up with Never Say Die which comes in very different from the start and then begins to really pick up the pace, having been recorded with the first half of the story. The chorus is low while the verses are the heavier rocking section of the track. A different approach from the band but as a whole the song works quite well and is a nice shift from the typical rocker style while not going too far to the left. The track feels heavier than those of the previous track and an amazing scream from Blackie is featured once again. Resurrector gallops in and shifts to a more typical approach, unlike the previous half of the storyline this one lacks small interlude tracks. Resurrector continues on the heavier approach which seems odd considering the albums where recorded at the same time and then later split into the two separate records. A strong high quality rocker. The Demise is up next and it continues on this high quality train of tracks, the song really dives a little more into the storyline of the albums and slows down slightly while doing so. Clockwork Mary is up next, it slows down further and becomes more atmospheric and sentimental then halfway through it picks back up and rocks out for a little while. Tear Down The Walls is up next and it launches off right from the start and the track lives up to its name as it rocks the foundations and really drives home a hard and direct rocking experience. The difference between the two albums in terms of track styles has become quite evident, this one is all the hard rockers while the last was a mix of mini-epics, a couple rockers and some softer approaches. Although we are only halfway through this album and there is a 13 minute closer yet to come. Come Back To Life is the weakest track thus far, it doesn't really offer much new stuff to the album and has a pretty weak chorus. It is a good rocker but not amazing being pretty decent aside from another strong solo. All My Life is the shortest track on the album Blackie conveys some good emotional vocals here, another track which goes to further the storyline of the album. Destinies To Come (Neon Dion) one final direct rocker before the album closer, it continues to build the album back to where the first 5 tracks where heading quality wise, and the track has a fair bit of energy to it, once again the solo section is the highlight of the track and this one is pretty darn impressive. The Last Redemption brings the album and storyline to a close. A different sounding track with some backing vocals having their time to shine and there is a fair bit of questioning the realities of faith in the early component before it really begins to pick up, I don't really know why the track has to be a full 13 minutes it seems to be trying to sum up what could have been done throughout the album. That being said musically the track has a fair bit going for it.

Never Say Die - 9/10
Resurrector - 9/10
The Demise - 8.5/10
Clockwork Mary - 9/10
Tear Down The Walls - 9/10
Come Back To Black - 7.5/10
All My Life - 8/10
Destinies To Come (Neon Dion) - 9/10
The Last Redemption - 8.5/10

Overall 86%

8 Albums remaining
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
358/365

Living The Dream Tour - Slash ft Myles Kennedy And The Conspirators
Format: CD/Digital - DVD

Initial thoughts: A brilliant setlist with only a single non-SMKC track, in the well selected choice of Nightrain. Was a brilliant set when I saw them I expect this to be similar

Call Of The Wild opens up the album, a great rocker being one of if not my favourite tracks from their catalog. Myles has some spots where you can tell he is just getting warmed up. The chorus has a lot of backing vocals which overwhelms Myles lead vocals. Slash delivers a great and strong lead guitar performance, super tight band. Halo is up next, one of the bands early main set choices on every tour I believe the band sounds massive, and Myles vocals sound incredible from the start, the backing vocals from Todd are super high not often does someone sing higher harmonies than Myles and it adds a different feel to the tracks as a result adding to their poppier side of rock sound with that edge remaining. Standing In The Sun comes up next a track from the bands first full album as a solidified group the introductory riff does a great job building up crowd energy and Myles has really hit his stride at this point, singing spot on. Ghost comes up next, the first track to be featured from Slash's self titled album. A fun track, which was replaced by a different track when I saw them so having this rendition is a nice addition to make the album have some variation from my own experience. Myles sings quite well on the track. Back From Cali another track from the self titled album comes up next; it starts stripped back before becoming another fun upbeat rocker, that is the energy found at SMKC shows, the tracks essentially all have a carefree lets have fun and rock feel to them and it makes for a great live experience. Myles takes a minute to interact with the crowd before launching into My Antidote the introduction for this track is the darkest of any of the tracks thus far, creating a bit in a shift of tone but as it gets going but the chorus is full of energy and positivity and the track demonstrates some diversity from the band. Serve You Right is up next, a track with an extended introduction, while the studio version didn't really do all that much for me when I heard it at first the live version has a lot of energy to it and it once again adds more variety to the set being a midpaced track in opposition to the faster rockers we have experienced thus far. Slash continues to play beautifully and without any expressions since I put in the DVD for the show seeing as it is the same as the CD version. Boulevard Of Broken Hearts is next up it builds up from a low guitar based introduction by Slash, Myles sings low before the track becomes another great upbeat rocker. The show has been full of energy thus far and the past 30 minutes has flown by. An up-lifing message about believing in ones self and reaching ones goals. It really is a track that fits right into the style of music from the band and their image. Shadow Life is the next track up, it opens similarly to the previous track however unlike the previous track the song is more of a stance against drug usage. The song structure isn't what one would expect from a typical direct rocker having more slower sections than your typical rocker. Amazing vocals throughout. Todd takes lead vocals for the next two tracks, first up is We're All Gonna Die which originally had Iggy Pop on lead vocals from the self titled album. A track about the carefree party life style. There is very little veiling of this subject matter throughout the track, it continues the fun approach to the song. Frankly while it is a fun track it does have an overall quality step down from everything before it. I will take this time to comment on the video, the band's show doesn't have the most elaborate light show nor do they have screens instead they just focus on their music, their drummer and rhythmn guitarists do some great work and one cannot help but make comparisons to GNR, the big 3 in SMKC are Myles, Slash and Todd. The singer, guitarist and the bassist who takes on a singing spot here and there... I wonder where I've seen that before. Dr. Alibi which once featured Lemmy on lead vocals is up next, a compact and direct track, Todd's vocals are amazing on this track and they really should record a studio rendition with him singing lead on the track or a original track with him on vocals for that matter. Tons of energy, Myles returns to the stage for Lost Inside The Girl one of the three ballads from the Living The Dream and the one which I connected to the most when I first heard the song. The guitar tone is amazing throughout the track and vocally it is delivered perfectly, with emotion and power, while still having a more rock filled edge to it. The track's bridge takes a darker turn live with Myles able to add an extra layer of discomfort to the listener as they realize the song is about an internet stalker. Wicked Stone brings the energy back up, the track has been extended into a 12 minute track from the original 5 minutes so I expect to see some serious soloing from Slash... I'm not disappointed. The main section of the song is phenomenal and upbeat, like My Antidote the track is on the heavier side from the band and it has become the perfect vehicle for Slash. Myles grabs a guitar and joins in at the back adding more rhythm guitar into the mix as the man in the top hat delivers a face melting performance at no point does the extension become tedious as it does in some cases, and I suspect this is due to the solo actually feeling like a viable extension to the track.

Mind Your Manners comes up next, shifting back into a play the song as it was mentality. High energy and featuring plenty of high notes throughout the track, and while the track is full of energy the tempo of it causes Myles to have to sacrifice some of the power in his voice. Driving Rain is up next the final track from Living The Dream to make it onto the album. It transitions quite well live, Myles does sound a little tired on this performance but as a whole the band is doing a really good job putting on an excellent show. By The Sword is next up a track which was dropped from the setlist for years and finally makes its return. A track about the honour of dying in combat, an excellent track which quite frankly shouldn't have been dropped in the first place, Slash's solo is epic and Myles delivers an absolutely amazing performance of the track, this song is really the beginning of the end of the show although there still is plenty of rocking left over. Nightrain is the sole Guns N Roses track to make it into the show and the crowd goes ecstatic for it, Myles does the song justice and the simple brilliance of the Appetite For Destruction track is show throughout the performance, it isn't even one of the band's hits persay but it is well known enough to get such a massive reaction. Starlight marks the second ballad of the show and a fitting one, the first track Slash and Myles played together which started the whole production of this band and their albums, like Lost Inside The Girl there is a evident rocking approach to the ballad which is a big contrast to something like November Rain. A phenomenal performance. You're A Lie brings the tempo back up, some more high notes from Myles dominate the chorus of this track, while the verse are sung in a low deeper voice. A pretty darn good performance of the track. Lots of energy which brings the band to the closer for the main set, World On Fire's title track clocking in at just over 17 and a half minutes this 4 minute track has been extended with soloing and band introductions the track kicks off with the original track, quick punchy and absolutely incredible. The talent of all 5 members of the band is amazing, they have put on (by the end of the track) a nearly two hour concert with no breaks for anyone except a 7 minute break or so for Myles and still they sound absolutely incredible here. I will say the solo goes on a little too long for my liking but being there in person it was incredible. Avalon opens the encore, the shortest track on the album direct and to the point it is a great way to kick off a section of the set and I believe it was the opener on the brief run before Living The Dream was released, regardless a quick punchy rocker with a quick easy chorus and a ton of energy behind it, what a way to start an encore for a show that has been endless upbeat fun rockers. Anastasia closes out the night easily one of Slash's best solo tracks, a brutal riff and amazing vocals from Myles it is an endless rock fest which closes out with a phenomenal solo from the man in the top hat.

Call Of The Wild - 8.5/10
Halo - 9/10
Standing In The Sun - 10/10
Ghost - 9/10
Back From Cali - 10/10
My Antidote - 9/10
Serve You Right - 9/10
Boulevard Of Broken Hearts - 10/10
Shadow Life - 10/10
We're All Gonna Die - 7.5/10
Dr. Alibi - 10/10
Lost Inside The Girl - 9/10
Wicked Stone - 10/10

Mind Your Manners - 8/10
Driving Rain - 8.5/10
By The Sword - 10/10
Nightrain - 10/10
Starlight - 10/10
You're A Lie - 9/10
World On Fire - 9.5/10
Avalon - 9/10
Anastasia - 10/10

Flow - A perfectly flowing setlist, good track selection - 10/10

Final Thoughts - Yes some tracks could have been swapped for others but wow is this show amazing and full of energy. - 10/10

Overall 94%
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
Speaking of extended tracks....

359/365

Live In Munich 1977 - Rainbow
Format: Digital

Initial Thoughts: The tour for the Long Live Rock N Roll album, pretty good setlist, it once again lacks Stargazer... which just seems so wrong - 9/10

Kill The King kicks off the live record from Rainbow this live record is less polished than the On Stage record which they released from the previous and this track really benefits from it, raw and aggressive the fury from Blackmore's guitar is amazing and is matched equally by the fury of Cozy Powell's drumming. Ronnie sounds amazing, his vocals so incredibly powerful. Mistreated comes up next, it seems odd to have a ballad so early in the setlist but when you are playing 8 songs and the set extends to 2 hours I guess it makes sense. Blackmore gets an extended introduction leads into the main riff and then Ronnie begins giving a lesson of how to sing this masterpiece perfectly. Bluesy, emotional and immersive the track is extended in a way which genuinely fits with the track much like the extensions in the previously reviewed album. Blackmore does a nice subdued guitar solo section for a little while before the track absolutely explodes once more becoming something far greater than the studio version from Deep Purple I'm very happy he chose to perform this track with Rainbow since it really comes together perfectly. Sixteenth Century Greensleeves is up next opening with a lengthened guitar introduction, it shows a little of what Blackmore would be heading towards in more recent years with his more folk rock style approach. Dio introduces the song partway through and the track shifts from a light introduction into the stronger castle rock track. The track is a nice higher energy track than the previous one, although I would still call Mistreated full of energy in these performances. Ronnie sounds pretty strong but the track has a bit more of an awkward rhythm to his vocals. Keyboards can be heard quite well here. Catch The Rainbow is up next, another ballad this one is once again extended, opening fairly similar to the original slowly building up and after a while Ronnie begins to sing, his voice so soft and full of power. Atmospheric and elegant this is a sublime performance of a fairly strong ballad which absolutely blows the studio version away. The 7 minute mark of this track has an incredibly immense and bombastic instrumental section... absolutely amazing. Long Live Rock N Roll is up next, Ronnie states that the album of the same name is going to be released pretty soon, once again Keyboards can be heard throughout and once the song starts going the band sounds super powerful and loud. The track takes a heavier approach live which is far more fitting of the track than the original version which has some of Blackmore's pop influence which while it works doesn't fit this band the greatest at this time. The song takes a bit of a break for Ronnie to interact with the crowd. The crowd participation allows for a segue into the outro which closes out the song quite well. Man On The Silver Mountain is up next, it like the remaining 2 tracks are extended quite a bit, spanning 16 minutes it comes in with a bit of a jam session, once the track comes in the tempo is increased becoming quite quick with Ronnie continuing to deliver a stellar performance of the bands first track. I wish the original had this tempo it is so catchy and powerful. Midway through the track the band takes a more subdued solo section before Ronnie does some vocal improvisions before launching in Starstruck for a brief moment, before more vocal improvisations occur including some references to Night People which would eventually come up again in his solo career he then begins interacting with the crowd before launching back into Man On The Silver Mountain. The track is pretty good but a little too long for a single sitting for me personally. Still I'm Sad comes up next, clocking in at just shy of half an hour, opening up with a keyboard solo with some more organ sounding effects as well. Unlike the bands studio version Ronnie is allowed to sing on it and the track does quite well, high energy and the first 7 minutes go by quite quickly in a flurry of solos mixed into the verses however after that the bass and keyboard solos become a little stale and 4 minutes passes which feels like 10. A drum solo begins at the 15 minute mark, snippets of different songs pop in here and there. Way too damn long. Do You Close Your Eyes closes off the album, extended to 8 minutes in length, A silly track from Rising. It opens with an extended solo before the main track comes into play, quick and fairly direct with plenty of energy throughout. It does a good job re-infusing the show with energy a good closer but it does leave a little to be desired.

Kill The King - 10/10
Mistreated - 10/10
Sixteenth Century Greensleeves - 9/10
Catch The Rainbow - 10/10
Long Live Rock N Roll - 9/10
Man On The Silver Mountain - 9/10
Still I'm Sad - 7/10
Do You Close Your Eyes - 8/10

Flow - All was good until Still I'm Sad the other tracks with extensions made sense for the most part but wow was that 30 minute chunk a chore. - 8.5/10

Final Thoughts - No Stargazer or A Light In The Black some unnecessary solos but as a whole a really strong live album performance wise. - 10/10

Overall 91%
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
Almost there...

Yup! Likely will do 2 more albums today. I have one that is supposed to come in on Monday hopefully it makes it in otherwise I'll find a different one to do but I'd prefer to not have to find another since most of the ones I have left are lengthy.
 

MrKnickerbocker

clap hands
As much as I would have loved to see that classic Rainbow lineup...I might have left during the jams. Those things are fucking tedious, especially when you have a singer like DIO.
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
360/365

The Wall - Pink Floyd
Format: Vinyl

Side 1: In The Flesh?/The Thin Ice/Another Brick In The Wall Part 1/The Happiest Days Of Our Lives/Another Brick In The Wall Part 2/Mother

In The Flesh? opens up Pink Floyds double album and world renown The Wall, the track feels like a big band track with clear orchestration from the beginning, a relatively short piece of music a rather moody introduction with some very clear world war sound effects. And the sounds of a baby crying seguing into The Thin Ice, depicting the birth of the character Pink the dark and moody orchestrations come in again at the end of this short piece which begins to depict the overbearing nature of Pink's mother. Another Brick In The Wall Part 1 comes up next within it Pink's father dies across the sea at war. There is some musical themes introduced here and a rather strong bass line. The Happiest Days Of Our Lives is up next a shorter track it gets towards Pinks childhood whereas the first 3 tracks have been his young life. A strong bass line and very direct vocals against teachers whom harm students another lyrical theme which heads into the next track. together these two tracks fit perfectly and really are quite clear call outs against some atrocities which were conducted in some schools... Mother closes out side one, and individually it is my favourite track from this side of the album. A track which highlights the overbearing nature of Pink's Mother, literally a helicopter and snowplow parent perfectly described in a wonderful little package.

In The Flesh? - 8.5/10
The Thin Ice - 8/10
Another Brick In The Wall Part 1 - 8/10
The Happiest Days Of Our Lives - 9/10
Another Brick In The Wall Part 2 - 10/10
Mother - 10/10
Side 1 - 53.5/60

Side 2: Goodbye Blue Sky/Empty Spaces/Young Lust/One Of My Turns/Don't Leave Me Now/Another Brick In The Wall Part 3/Goodbye Cruel World

Goodbye Blue Sky is about the blitz bombings on London, the vocals from Water and Gilmour are haunting as they sing about running for cover from the potential death from above which they would be facing. It segues into Empty Spaces which builds a sense of urgency and darkness as Pink continues to build up his wall cutting himself off from the world. The vocals have some anger behind them. Young Lust takes a more upbeat approach and speaks to Pinks love life, the track has some really nice guitar work from Gilmour and there is a nice feel to it throughout. The end is a discovery that Pink's wife is not being faithful to him. One Of My Turns is about Pink taking a groupie back to his hotel room only for things to get a little out of hand in a fit of rage. He scares them out of the room, Don't Leave Me Now is Pink becoming more depressed about his wife and he begins to really internalize the pain as the third part of Another Brick In The Wall begins. The shortest portion it begins with the breaking of a tv set in Pinks room. Within this section he comes to the conclusion that everyone is just a brick in his wall. Musically calm with an air of darkness.Side 2 closes with Goodbye Cruel World in which Pink closes himself off from everyone else

Goodbye Blue Sky/Empty Spaces - 8.5/10
Young Lust - 10/10
One Of My Turns - 8/10
Don't Leave Me Now - 8/10
Another Brick In The Wall Part 3/Goodbye Cruel World - 9/10
Side 2 - 43.5/50

Side 3: Hey You/Is There Anybody Out There?/Nobody Home/Vera/Bring The Boys Back Home/Comfortably Numb

Pinks journey continues having fulling shut himself from those outside. This is one of the most energetic tracks thus far and Gilmour really takes a great opportunity to really show off some of his great soloing skills, playing with an immense amount of feeling throughout. Is There Anybody Out There? is up next a short piece which is mostly instrumental, acoustic and pleasant the track has some string backing to it and continues on the emotional feelings throughout. Not much else really to say. Nobody's Home shows the depth of Pinks depression as he turns to his possessions for comfort. While this doesn't really work for him, it shows the level of darkness he has been living with. Vera and Bring The Boys Back Home pertains to Pink trying to connect Vera about his wife while the latter is about bringing the men back from World War II it has a lot of operatic components and the two serve further into Pinks mind. Comfortably Numb closes out side 3 and well what can be said about this track, coming in dark and haunting Waters takes on the role of the doctor helping Pink be able to perform while Gilmour takes on the role of Pink himself singing incredibly throughout the chorus. A beautiful closing guitar solo brings side 3 into a close, and with it one of Pink Floyd's greatest tracks.

Hey You - 10/10
Is There Anybody Out There? - 7.5/10
Nobody Home - 8.5/10
Vera/Bring The Boys Back Home - 8/10
Comfortably Numb - 10/10
Side 3- 44/ 50

Side 4: The Show Must Go On/In The Flesh/Run Like Hell/Waiting For Worms/Stop/The Trial/Outside The Wall

The Show Must Go On starts the final side of the album, a performance from Pink which from what I can tell is supposed to be a drug induced performance resulting in many issues coming forwards such as imagining he is at a Nazi rally which takes place during In The Flesh a track in which Pink really lay into some political grounds which the entire album has been. A concert would take quite a dark turn with these types of comments throughout. A real big fall from grace and incredibly well orchestrated by the band. Run Like Hell comes up next, taking a more upbeat approach comparatively to the previous tracks. This track continues on the darker themes of Pink attacking minorities. The track has a very psychedelic approach to it, I believe this simulates the trip that Pink is on throughout it. Waiting For Worms is a rally occurring in London lead by Pink, in which he eventually comes out of his trip (Stop). The bands harmonies are pretty darn great throughout, his trip has really taken him into a dark place at this point now leading rally although I question just how bad the drugs from his doctor have taken their toll at this point. The Trial is a a final longer track in which Pink goes on trial within his mind and ultimately comes to the conclusion to tear down his wall as the final track of the album Outside the Wall closes off the album.

The Show Must Go On/In The Flesh - 9/10
Run Like Hell - 9/10
Waiting For Worms/Stop - 8.5/10
The Trial - 8/10
Outside The Wall - 8/10
Side 4 - 42.5/50

Overall 87%
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
As much as I would have loved to see that classic Rainbow lineup...I might have left during the jams. Those things are fucking tedious, especially when you have a singer like DIO.

Yea I have no idea why some bands would just extend these songs, like Still I'm Sad got to the point where I was checking how long was left far too frequently. When they play the song it was great but some soloing was a little too much. I have the same issue with Zeppelin's renditions of No Quarter and Dazed And Confused
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
361/365

Audioslave - Audioslave
Format: CD/Digital

Cochise opens with quite a catchy riff before Chris launches in on vocals his vocals are full of rasp and angst in a sense, the style is more direct than his more distorted style of Soundgarden. A direct rocker which shows a more modern approach and sounds much more commecial as a whole to this other bands. Show Me How To Live comes in sounding more Soundgarden esc, especially from a vocal perspective, it comes up and gets more aggressive and Chris displays some of his vocal range shifting between louder cries and more distorted low singing. The music piece of it sounds a lot like the Soundgarden and Temple Of The Dog which I have heard. A brutal cry closes out the song. Gasoline shows yet another side of the singers vocal delivery and the band steps back a little bit. It has a burst of energy then steps back again. Another prime example of Chris Cornell's wails. I have never listened to Rage Against The Machine but I've been told this album is fairly similar musically so I might have to give them a listen at some point. What You Are slows right down before once again having this explosive feel to it, I will once again mention just how versatile Chris Cornell was as a vocalist. I remember the last time he came through solo a guy at the gym was talking about going but chose not to because of the acoustic nature of the show instead of the hard rocker, I wish I had taken the opportunity to have seen him. Anger is conveyed greatly throughout, a bit of grunge, in this alternative rock piece. Like A Stone comes in next one of the albums 5 singles released over a two year span from 2002 to 2004. A pretty mellow track, catchy and a nice shift from the others thus far, the anger is mostly gone. The guitar solo is incredibly distorted. Set It Off has a rather unique and odd introduction to it. A pretty solid track not amazing it just doesn't feel super well connected to me. Shadow Of The Sun comes up next, it is the longest track of the album although I wouldn't call it a long track by any means. It starts off slow and has a burst of energy for the chorus. An interesting track which takes more of an art rock approach in some places, I could see it growing on me over time. I Am The Highway comes up next, a rather mellow track which was my introduction to Chris Cornell's music. An amazing stripped back performance, the track really is about standing up for yourself and it shows throughout, a simple and effective track. Exploder follows up and it gets the higher tempo feel back into the album. It has a lot of energy in the chorus with the band really letting loose. Hypnotizer opens rather low and continues staying low, lyrically the track has some rather interesting comments that it is making. The track sounds like the natural volume of it is lower than the rest of the album thus far. Bring Em Back Alive, is next and it doesn't do much for me, distorted with some wailing here and there. Light My Way comes in next, it connects a little bit more, but the album is starting to feel a little samey and bloated. It is a pretty decent track as a whole. Everyone sounds good but it has reached a point where some tracks just don't feel as engaging. Getaway Car slows right down once again. A pretty good slower track, emotional in some places. The Last Remaining Light closes off the album, the track has a really strong atmospheric feel to it, building a dark feeling throughout

Cochise - 8/10
Show Me How To Live - 8.5/10
Gasoline - 9/10
What You Are - 9/10
Like A Stone - 8/10
Set It Off - 7.5/10
Shadow Of The Sun - 8/10
I Am The Highway - 10/10
Exploder - 8/10
Hypnotizer - 8/10
Bring Em Back Alive - 7/10
Light My Way - 7.5/10
Getaway Car - 8/10
The Last Remaining Light -8/10

Overall 81%
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
362/365

Crimson Glory - Crimson Glory
Format: Digital

Mayday opens up the debut album by Crimson Glory, with a countdown once the countdown ends the track kicks off, some wailing guitars and a high pitched squeal. A friend of mine recommended them to me saying they were like Judas Priest, wow that they are but with a fair bit of Queensryche mixed into it. A roaring opener, full of high notes and blazing solos guitar harmonies everywhere. Furious rocking holy shit this is good. The singer's name is Midnight and wow does he wail like Rob Halford. Only downside is the track isn't even 3 minutes long :(. Queen Of The Masquerade comes up next, Midnight sings more directly from the start, taking a more Geoff Tate approach to the song, The track feels a little dated but it doesn't change the quality of the track, a longer chorus with some crying guitars placed well throughout. The chorus would allow for some good crowd participation. The solo is more of a bass highlight and Midnight comes back in with a great wail to end off the song with one last chorus. Valhalla kicks the energy back up a notch, harmonizing guitars flood the introduction, there are some elements of darkness throughout and wow is the guitar work pretty damn good. Pretty good outro, focused mainly on the high pitched vocals of Midnight. Azrael comes in next, a track about the Angel of Death, a great almost Maiden esc guitar harmony section transitions the song up in tempo and the song takes on a really catch and heavier approach. Pretty damn impressive vocals throughout. Dragon Lady opens with a bang, full of enegry, some progressive feeling moments and killer high notes, guitar harmonies left and right. I don't know how well the band would have fared in terms of being headliners but they would have been a phenomenal opening band with some killer tracks, especially with this debut under their belt. Lost Reflection slows down, Midnight's lower voice starts each line and it sounds dark and creepy before becoming higher with each passing word transitioning to that more Geoff Tate sound. The track is ballad and while it sounds nice it lacks the emotional power which it really could have, with a minute and half remaining it shifts from the soft ballad into a midpaced heavy rocker of sorts with some wails and stronger drumbeats. Heart Of Steel comes in next, it continues the slower and more ballad like approach from the previous track, it turns into an effective midpaced rocker, with an impressively long vocal delivery of the title throughout the chorus. It feels a little more commercial than the other tracks but it has, it shows that the previous track really could have been quite impressive if slightly reworked, maybe thats why there is a second version of it as bonus track. Angels Of War comes in with a space like introduction, the Queensryche comparisons really fit this track in both sound and vocals, even the production seems similar. Not a bad thing if you like Queensryche which I do. Dreamer Dancer closes out the album, a track added to the remaster it has a very spacey introduction, acoustic guitars and some light vocals. The calm introduction is eventually cast aside and the track really builds up into a good midpaced rocker for a little while before once again shifting to a softer portion then again back to a more upbeat component in which the solo sections occur a strong album closer.

Mayday - 10/10
Queen Of The Masquerade - 9/10
Valhalla - 8.5/10
Azrael - 9.5/10
Dragon Lady - 10/10
Lost Reflection - 7.5/10
Heart Of Steel - 8.5/10
Angels Of War - 9/10
Dreamer Dancer - 9/10

Overall 90%

3 remain, 1 is in the mail and that was the one I was planning on doing next, likely will swap it with the penultimate one since the final album was chosen very early on to close off the run.
 

The Dissident

Ancient Mariner
363/365

En Vivo! - Iron Maiden
Format: Vinyl

Initial Thoughts: Not my favourite Maiden album, but what a setlist, the songs chosen to represent the album are well chosen, the deeper cuts are good and the hits are present. - 10/10

Side 1: Satellite 15/The Final Frontier/El Dorado

I'm not sure why Maiden decided to include the full instrumental PA recording of Satellite 15 as the crowd gets pumped for the show to begin, the instrumental has already been reviewed in a sense on the The Final Frontier review from a few months ago. It is a pretty solid short instrumental but like all other introductory portions for concerts I'm not going to rate it as it isn't part of the music being played live at the show. The Final Frontier comes up as the opening track for the concert and the album. Bruce sings the final notes of Satellite 15 as it transitions into The Final Frontier and the track begins to take a heavier approach as the band comes in progressively. The Final Frontier is a pretty direct rocker and there is a distinct difference between the introduction and this track should have been separate on the original album. A super easy to sing a long to chorus and frankly a fairly catchy track, the guitar tone is pretty great on it. And Bruce sounds solid as well. His delivery of the chorus feels like there is some sort of effect on it but as a whole a better version than the studio version. El Dorado comes to play. Santiago Screams for Bruce. The bands sole Grammy winning track is a pretty good later rocker, sounding pretty dark as if Bruce is telling a dark legend of the legendary chief to a group of unsuspecting travelers, the chorus reaches up higher. This track is one of the tracks from more recent years that I feel the band wrote a little higher than necessary for their aging frontman's vocal prowess, it works but there are plenty of times in both studio and here that I feel like the track is reaching the limits of Bruce. The chorus being one example, although it is effectively done fairly often as well.

The Final Frontier - 8.5/10
El Dorado - 8.5/10
Side 1 - 17/20

Side 2: 2 Minutes To Midnight/The Talisman/Coming Home

The first hit to appear in the setlist is the ever present 2 Minutes To Midnight, Bruce introduces the track as a brand new song from 1982, just a couple years off but still a great opening to the track. The crowd singing the chorus is amazing as always. The track really comes to life in the live show, a concert staple for a reason it has a ton of energy and the band sound great on it throughout. Adrian and Dave deliver effective solos and crowd beings jumping upon Bruce's command. Once again the audience Screams upon request. Towards the end of the track I feel like Bruce has gotten properly warmed up and his vocal chords sound a lot stronger than at the start of the track. The Talisman is the next track up from The Final Frontier one of my two favourite tracks from the album, it comes in with a bit of an extended introduction, Bruce sings low and powerfully over this calm introduction, his delivery painting a beautiful and haunting image of the journey for fortune and a Talisman, it erupts and his vocals soar towards the sky, and the journey takes a darkened turn. Incredible energy is demonstrated by Nicko here his drums furiously beating beneath the guitar based assault, then the band takes their turns soloing. Phenomenal delivery. Coming Home closes off side 2, my other favourite track from The Final Frontier, a ballad of sorts with a soaring chorus, once again Bruce paints a picture with his singing, his vocals are quite steady throughout. Steve is ever present delivering his bass lines with power and emphasis. The band sounds pretty darn good here one of their better performances of a more recent track.

2 Minutes To Midnight - 9/10
The Talisman - 10/10
Coming Home - 10/10
Side 2 - 29/30

Side 3: Dance Of Death/The Trooper/The Wicker Man

The Dance Of Death continues the themes of stories and legends being presented within the setlist thus far, an excellent post-reunion track to be within the setlist, theatrical, dramatic and explosive with a killer performance from Bruce on vocals. The chorus is powerful and emotive. Janick did an excellent job writing this epic track. Maiden's classic gallop is present, the track translates incredibly well into the live setting and features some guitar work which would really work well to be sung ala Fear Of The Dark and the crowd believes this as well as they begin to sing the phenomenal guitar work from the 3 masters of their craft. The Trooper is the first direct rocker for a while and it is another track which everyone knew was coming at some point. The crowd cheers with the opening riff a brilliant piece of music filled with the roar of the crowd, guitars and thundering drums. Bruce sounds slightly strained but consistent in terms of his delivery throughout the track. Driving, and perfect for getting even the most dead crowds onto their feet, but lets be real this is a Maiden concert in South America there was no one sitting down. Great soloing. Adrian introduces The Wicker Man the amazing opener from the Brave New World album, and the bands first single since the reunion. Verses are pretty strong and the chorus is ripe with the audience crying out the lines alongside Bruce. Adrian shreds through his solo and ultimately the track delivers live as always.

Dance Of Death - 10/10
The Trooper - 9/10
The Wicker Man - 9/10
Side 3 - 28/30

Side 4: Blood Brothers/When The Wild Wind Blows

Blood Brothers continues on the Brave New World train, the guitar tone, sounds so pure here, quite similar to the album the band is supporting actually, it would have been interesting to see some more Somewhere In Time, Brave New World, and Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son material throughout the set since those 3 albums really sound close to the tone of The Final Frontier. The backing vocals aren't always Maiden's strongest point but for Blood Brothers the band manages to pull together some rather good ones throughout. Always well performed here is no exception, a beautiful track and one of Maiden's ballads. When The Wild Wind Blows takes up the remainder of side 4, the closing track from The Final Frontier. The sprawling epic opens with winds being blown through the speakers and a Steve centered introduction soon leads into a very folky style guitar lick. This live album has been full of storytelling of sorts, and as per the rest of the songs being well delivered from Bruce his vocals painting a story. A more happy sounding story than the previous ones but the context is more closely related to the tone of the earlier tracks we have been exposed to, the pending end of the world. All three guitarists deliver phenomenal guitar tones throughout the track as the final The Final Frontier track is delivered as a showcase of the band's pure talent.

Blood Brothers - 10/10
When The Wild Wind Blows - 10/10
Side 4 - 20/20

Side 5: The Evil That Men Do/ Fear Of The Dark/Iron Maiden

The Evil That Men Do kicks off side 5 in style and Bruce tells the crowd he can't heard them as they sing the majestic opening riff before the track absolutely launches into the bulk of the track, a soaring chorus calls the crowd into it as they sing the song just as much as Bruce does, the track feels a little quicker than it normally does, although that could just be in contrast to the previous two slower tracks which preceded it. Incredible guitar harmonies throughout the solo and the momentum doesn't slow down one bit throughout. Fear Of The Dark signals the end of the main set has truly begun, the crowd isn't as into it as they were in Rio all those years ago but they do a pretty darn good job. Bruce incorporates being cold into the walking through the park line and does a pretty great job making the Dad Joke stick within the song. As always the band is on fire throughout the track Bruce sounds pretty strong but he is sadly the weakest link in this track. Overall he does a great job but he isn't as young as he used to be and likely was already unknowingly fighting cancer at this point which would be taking a bit of a toll on his vocal chords. Iron Maiden closes out the main set, that introduction riff sounds amazing live and the pure energy put into the track after all these years continues to really show the raw power which the band had in their early days hasn't dulled over the years. The more punchy approach among these more epic sounding tracks is a nice shift in style and makes the song feel fresh despite being played at literally every Iron Maiden show since it was written. A perfect performance.

The Evil That Men Do - 9.5/10
Fear Of The Dark - 10/10
Iron Maiden - 10/10
Side 3 - 29.5/30

Side 6: The Number Of The Beast/Hallowed Be Thy Name/Running Free

The Number Of The Beast opens up the encore, one of the most fitting places for the title track of Bruce's first album with the spoken introduction coming up and the entire crowd says the introduction along with the recording. With a scream being nailed the song rockets off the warning of the devil, beautiful, vicious and delivered to the fullest. Screaming guitars make the song sound incredibly fresh, there even sounds like there is some talk box in places but I think I'm going crazy. Hallowed Be Thy Name takes the album a step towards a pure The Number Of The Beast encore, the tolling bell adds an ominous feel to an already ominous track, the introduction was completely nailed vocally and instrumentally probably one of the better overall performances on it from the live albums. The main verse is delivered quite well as well. The band sounds immense at this point, pure masters of their craft and quite frankly delivering a piece of music which has very few rivals at an incredibly high level of skill and proficiency. A godly performance. Running Free closes out the show, the bands debut single has an incredibly recognizable introductory drum beat, upbeat and punchy like the bands eponymous track, this one however has more of the punk feel from the earlier albums than the aforementioned track. There is a bit of crowd participation in this track, which lengthens it unnecessarily, I think if the track just stuck to its original formula it could be be a good replacement for Wrathchild as the bands go to fill in punchy rocker for a tour... Bruce introduces the band which I find odd that they don't do it at every show and only when they play this track. A fine track but those introductions just take too long.

The Number Of The Beast - 10/10
Hallowed Be Thy Name - 10/10
Running Free - 8/10
Side 6 - /30

Flow: Start to finish non-stop rocking and great performances - 10/10

Final Thoughts: Not my favourite studio album being represented but wow is the set filled with great choices and performances, the band chose the best of The Final Frontier to showcase on this tour, having Dance Of Death was also a good choice, getting some bonus tracks from the 2011 tour would have been cool as well. - 10/10

Overall 95%
 
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