Friday, June 12, 2009

Albums of the Day

Live at the Royal Albert Hall, by Emerson, Lake, & Palmer (1993) and The Way We Walk, Vol. 2: The Longs, by Genesis (1993): Another interesting compare and contrast that popped up in the running order. By the early 90s, the prog legends of the 70s were in various states of disrepair. ELP was back for the first time (as EL&Palmer, at least) since their awful 70s send off Love Beach. Genesis was hugely popular, but on the back of treacly pop tunes that didn't serve their legacy very well (and, as it turned out, the floor was about to fall out as Phil Collins left after this tour).

So what about the albums themsleves? The ELP disc relies heavily on the 70s tunes, with only three new bits in the set. Unfortunately, except for a pleasingly well filled out version of "Pirates," we only get cut up bits of "Karn Evil 9" (even the single version) and "Tarkus." It smacks a little too hard of a band resting on their laurels.

Genesis, on the other hand, kept plowing forward. The classic days are left only to the 20-minute "Old Medley," with all the other tracks exploring the longer/proggier edges of the band's current catalog. Honestly? They're mostly really good. They're not "Cinema Show," but then again what is? Genesis, at least, still had some life in their old bones.

1 comment:

Paul Higginbotham said...

I'm a big fan of The Way We Walk Vol. 2, mainly because those long songs are reminiscent of the classic Genesis sound, as opposed to the radio-friendly pop stuff they churned out for most of the 80s.