CD The Night the Lights Went On (In Long Beach) (CD 1223731),
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The Night the Lights Went On (In Long Beach)
Electric Light Orchestra
3. Day Tripper
4. 10538 Overture
5. Mik's Solo/Orange Blossom Special
6. In the Hall of the Mountain King/Great Balls of Fire
7. Roll Over Beethoven
8. Great Balls of Fire
9. Roll Over Beethoven
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 4911032
Personnel: Jeff Lynne (vocals, guitar, keyboards, synthesizer); Richard Tandy (vocals, keyboards, synthesizer); Michael d'Albuquerque (vocals, bass guitar, background vocals); Bev Bevan (vocals, drums, percussion); Mik Kaminski (violin); Hugh McDowell, Mike Edwards (cello).
Liner Note Author: Rob Caiger.
Recording information: Long Beach Auditorium (05/12/1974).
This album, recorded at Long Beach Auditorium on May 12, 1974, appeared as a limited release in a handful of countries in the mid-1970s, and showed up as a remastered, somewhat improved LP in 1985. But this marks its debut as a compact disc, made from the upgraded 1980s master. The resulting CD is, for starters, really, really loud, a far cry from the muddy sound of the original LP. Additionally, the band -- who had no time even for a soundcheck due to various delays -- is unusually raw and spirited, as though a highly animated show could compensate for any probable defects in the tuning and timing. They needn't have worried, although the resulting performance is ferocious, like little else the band ever delivered. Further, a range of detail in the playing can be heard on this CD that was obscured on the original LP. As for the repertory, it's all rooted in the group's first three albums -- "Daybreaker" (with Bev Bevan's drums sounding like they're practically in your lap, and the rest of the band equivalently close), "Showdown" and "In the Hall of the Mountain King" are juxtaposed with "10538 Overture" and robust covers of "Day Tripper," "Orange Blossom Special" (with a Mik Kaminski solo violin spot) and "Great Balls of Fire," with the band's version of "Roll Over Beethoven" as the finale. This disc predates ELO's emergence as a major international act by perhaps a year, and captures them doing the material upon which their basic sound was formed and cast. Lynne's sinewy guitar playing, in particular, is extraordinary, and the digital master brings it all the way up front, and Bev Bevan's lunatic rolls and fills on "Roll Over Beethoven" might've made even Keith Moon a little dizzy. The band also manages to have fun with their own history, while anticipating their future, integrating a quotation from what was then exclusively a Move song, "Do Ya," into their version of "10538 Overture." It makes the song and the album. ~ Bruce Eder
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Epic (USA) 4911032
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