Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Blues, Pop, Rock, Classic Rock, Metal
Digitally remastered Japanese reissue of his top 40 1991 double live album for Duck/ Reprise in a miniaturized LP sleeve limited to the initial pressing only. All 15 tracks were recorded over 24 nights at London's Royal Al... more »
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Digitally remastered Japanese reissue of his top 40 1991 double live album for Duck/ Reprise in a miniaturized LP sleeve limited to the initial pressing only. All 15 tracks were recorded over 24 nights at London's Royal Albert Hall in 1990-91 & contains many of his best with Cream, Derek & The Dominos, and as a solo artist, including 'Badge', 'Bell Bottom Blues' and 'Wonderful Tonight'. Gatefold sleeve. 1999 release.
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***1/2. Not perfect, but '24 Nights' still has its moments
Docendo Discimus | Vita scholae | 06/06/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Seeing how this album only has fifteen tracks, I think it's safe to say that not all of Eric Clapton's 24 Royal Albert Hall performances are represented.
Never mind, though. "24 Nights" is still worthwhile, even if it is a far cry from the gritty and powerful "Eric Clapton's Rainbow Concert" from '73.
Recorded in 1990 and 1991, "24 Nights" draws from material recorded through his entire career, and the listener has plenty of opportunities to complain about the songs that aren't here.
But let us focus on what is here instead. The man from Surrey draws no less than five songs from his then-current studio album "Journeyman", and all of them work well in this live setting, souning a little less polished than they do on the studio recordings. Especially "Pretending", which comes off slick and over-produced on "Journeyman", but rocks reasonably well here.
The first four songs are recorded with Eric Clapton's touring band (bass, drums, keyboards and Clapton himself), and they come of a little bit bland at times.
Of course I'm always looking for more grit and more real blues riffing in Clapton's playing, rather than just extended soloing, and "24 Nights" doesn't really deliver too much of that, but that is not to say that the arrangements are bad, and Clapton was never too big on the blooze-and-boogie-stuff anyway.
Still, I much prefer the next four tracks, which are recorded with Robert Cray and Chicago blues king Buddy Guy. The two additional guitars make for a richer sound, and lend a real blues-rock feel to "Watch Yourself". The slow, groovy renditions of "Hoodoo Man", and "Worried Life Blues" fare pretty well, too, but I don't know if we really need yet another version of "Have Your Ever Loved A Woman".
The third installment (tracks 9-13) features seven musicians and two backup singers, and that band includes a second guitarist (Phil Palmer, who has worked with everybody from Ralph McTell to Robbie Williams), which bolsters the sound nicely, particularly on the aforementioned "Pretending" and on "Bad Love". This set also includes an unfortunately listless rendition of the classic "Bell Bottom Blues", which features some awful 80s-style keyboard playing and which largely lacks the soul and the intenstity of the original.
The final two songs are recorded with the Royal Philharminic Orchestra (in addition to a full rock band). Whether or not that adds anything interesting to "Hard Times" or "Edge Of Darkness", which aren't the most interesting songs to begin with, is probably a matter of taste.
All in all, "24 Nights" is a pleasant, somewhat laid-back live album. The arrangements are more pop than blues at times, but the songs are generally well executed, and the sound quality is excellent.
3 1/2 stars. A good purchase if you like Eric Clapton's solo years, particularly from the late seventies onwards."
First CD a bore; second CD is fantastic
kireviewer | Sunnyvale, Ca United States | 12/12/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Nearly every year, starting in 1987, Eric Clapton would have several night stints at Royal Albert Hall. This album is taken from shows from 1990 and 1991. The album is broken up into performances from 4 different bands: 4 piece band, a blues band featuring Robert Cray, Buddy Guy and Jimmie Vaughn, a 9 piece band and an orchestra.The first four songs are performed by Clapton`s long standing back up band from the eighties. Some critics say that this was the best Clapton band ever and that the versions of the Cream songs are powerful. I always felt that this was Clapton's bleakest period and that these versions of the Cream songs are bland and boring. On some songs, he just rushes through them. There is no energy or emotion. Worse yet, there are no Clapton guitar solos. Sunshine of Your Love is nine minutes long, but most of the extended time is taken up with a drum solo. While it is good that Clapton gives room to the other players, this drum solo isn't very good.The last half of the first CD is the blues band featuring Guy, Cray and Vaughn. You would expect that mix to be fantastic. But, the guest musicians are relegated to the background, playing rhythm guitar and don't add anything to the songs. Clapton really should have given up singing Have You Ever Loved A Woman by now. It no longer has the meaning to him that made is so powerful as when he first sang it. You wonder if there were other better songs from this band that didn't get include on the CD.The second CD comes from 1991 when Clapton was just beginning to turn things around in his life and music. The first 5 songs are from a 9 piece rock band, similar to his back up band from the mid-seventies. It features some of his best live music. You might expect that the larger band would be overproduced and Clapton would get lost in the overwhelming sound. But it is just the opposite. The sound is crisp and clean and Clapton comes up front, playing and singing with emotion. I think that Clapton needs a larger group to keep him energized. Old Love is a fantastic blues number. The version of Wonderful Tonight is the best on record. The last part of the CD is Clapton fronting an orchestra. If you ever thought that Clapton is at his best playing with a stripped down band, listen to his leads with a full orchestra. He really pulls and moves the orchestra with some of his best guitar work ever.This ablum is just over 50 minutes per CD. You would think that in the age of the CD, that they could have included more songs. Alot of the music is so promising, you would expect that was alot of good stuff left off. This show also comes in a DVD, but the DVD has fewer songs and some of the songs were edited. As an alternative to this CD, I would recommend the 4 CD set, Crossroads 2, Live in the Seventies. It has three CD's that are on a par with the 9 piece group, and 1 CD featuring the 4 piece group."
Eric's best live album
firstname.lastname@example.org | Sao Paulo, Brazil | 09/29/1998
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is Eric's best solo live album. It has a great selection of songs, and the band backs him up perfectly. His blues band, with Buddy Guy and Robert Cray, plays incredibly, especially in Watch Yourself. He plays great versions of Cream songs, especially Badge, and from his Journeyman album, particularly Pretending. This CD has his best version of Wonderful Tonight, with beautiful backup singing by Katie Kisson, who is great in Bell Bottom Blues, too. There's also Hard Times, one of his favorite songs, and his heartfelt version is wonderful. Heart of Darkness is an odd choice to be in the CD, but it's good too. All in all, a must-have."