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Magnum – Live At The Symphony Hall

Live At The Symphony Hall
by Dave Nowels at 29 January 2019, 11:48 AM

Released on January 18th  via Steamhammer , British rockers MAGNUM present their documentation of their UK ‘Road to Eternity’ tour finale. Released as “Live At Symphony Hall”, the album is a double CD or gatefold 3 LP format, the album’s cuts were recorded live at the Birmingham Symphony Hall on April 19th 2018. The band members have indicated that this show was special for a few reasons. One, the performance was the conclusion of their 42 date UK tour, and two, that the show was a sort of homecoming with the band all being from the Birmingham and Wolverhampton areas.

Live albums in general can be a bit of a mixed bad for many. Often times the sound or the mixing can be a dicey gamble. Often live albums are the go-to solution used by a band to fulfill obligations to a record company when the creativity well runs dry so to speak. Thankfully, none of those scenarios are in order here. What MAGNUM and Steamhammer have released with “Live At Symphony Hall” is a live release that both the band and it’s fans can be extremely proud of.
Disc one opens with the incredibly catchy “When We Were Younger”.

For this reviewer, this song was the first introduction to MAGNUM, and I found it to be a fine one indeed. Also highlighting disc one, were a pair of songs featuring special guests for this special performance. Tobias Sammet (AVANTASIA) joins the band for “Long Road to Eternity” while Rebecca Downes is featured on “Without Love”. Just like that, MAGNUM have cycled through seven ‘newer’ cuts, without wavering in their momentum. Closing out the first half of the album/show is the first appearance of one of the band’s classics, with  “How Far Jerusalem”, and I’ll be damned if that ‘classic’ sound hasn’t been present throughout those previous tracks.

Disc two opens with the reserved, yet compelling powerhouse that is “Les Morts Dansant”. It becomes apparent that the band has done a spectacular job constructing the setlist, following this slower pace with the crowd engaging tracks “Show Me Your Hands” and “All England’s Eyes”. As mentioned previously, the momentum never wavers as vocalist Bob Catley energizes the audience in every single track.  Guitarist Tony Clarkin and band really get the chance to shine on “Don’t Wake the Lion (Too Old to Die Young) with the song really taking on epic proportions, and perhaps a double meaning.

“Live At Symphony Hall” is a really finely done documentation of a classic band still on top of their game. The fact that the newer material shines just as brightly as the older classic material is impressive. It speaks volumes for the talent of MAGNUM, and that the ‘lion’ is indeed wide awake. We should all be thankful that this night was captured.

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Disc 1
1. When We Were Younger
2. Sacred Blood ‘Divine’ Lies
3. Lost On The Road to Eternity
4. Crazy Old Mothers
5. Without Love
6. Your Dreams Won’t Die
7. Peaches and Cream
8. How Far Jerusalem

Disc 2
1. Les Morts Dansant
2. Show Me Your Hands
3. All England’s Eyes
4. Vigilante
5. Don’t Wake The Lion (Too Old to Die Young)
6. The Spirit
7. When the World Comes Down
Tony Clarkin - Guitars
Bob Catley – Vocals
Al Barrow – Bass
Harry James – Drums
Rick Benton - Keyboards
Record Label: Steamhammer


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Edited 30 November 2022

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