Monday, February 3, 2014

Focus - Live At The Rainbow (1973 dutch, astonishing live art prog rock, japan remaster)

Focus' classic live-album recorded at the Rainbow Theatre in London was released at the height of their popularity, and explains all why Focus were such a successful and respected act. The playing here is incredibly tight and energetic. The tracks are usually performed a bit harder and faster than their studio-counterparts; just check the high-octane version of "Hocus Pocus". The selections of tracks are also very carefully done, and makes sure that every side of Focus' music is represented here. 

You get the ultra-typical, melodic and classic Focus-sound in "Focus III" and "Focus II", the more jam-oriented direction in "Answers? Questions! Questions? Answers", the more commercial and catchy side in "Sylvia" and of course full progressive rock-bliss in an 8-minute excerpt of "Eruption". The sound is excellent for a live-album this old, further making this one of the essential live-albums from a progressive rock band. And try to hunt down the version with the cool gimmick-cover if you can find it, as it's really worth the money!
by Tommy Schonenberg
1. Focus III (Thijs Van Leer) - 3:52
2. Answers? Questions! Questions? Answers! (Jan Akkerman, Bert Ruiter) - 11:29
3. Focus II (Van Leer) - 4:36
4. Eruption (Excerpt): (Tom Barlage, Van Leer) - 8:28
5. Hocus Pocus (Akkerman, Van Leer) - 8:30
6. Sylvia (Van Leer) - 2:47
7. Hocus Pocus (Reprise) (Akkerman, Van Leer) - 2:46

*Thijs Van Leer - Keyboards, Flute, Vocals
*Jan Akkerman - Guitar
*Bert Ruiter - Bass Guitar
*Pierre Van Der Linden - Drums

1970  Focus - In And Out Of Focus (Japan remaster)
1971  Focus - Moving Waves (Japan remaster)
1972  Focus III  (Japan mini lp release)
1974  Focus - Hamburger Concerto  (Japan remaster)
1975  Focus - Mother Focus (Japan remaster)
Related Act
1969-70  Brainbox - Brainbox (2011 Esoteric expanded)

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