As one of the most influential and popular bands of the early prog scene it is no surprise that the music of Emerson, Lake & Palmer has been fairly relentlessly remastered and repackaged and that lots of live performances, many of them (like this one) previously only available as bootlegs, have been released for the baby-boomer audience that made the trio famous. The band really had two main influences: Classical music that plays out here with Keith Emerson's expansive tributes to the likes of Mussorgsky and Prokofiev (Pictures at an Exhibition and The Enemy God Dances with the Black Spirits respectively) and King Crimson with singer/bassist Greg Lake being a former member. Emerson's intense style of piano playing was the main reason that ELP was often tagged with the indulgent label but it was another story when the song called for synthesizer, like the excellent reading of Tarkus here that Keith introduces as being, A fantasy type of thing about a creature that looks a little something like an armadillo. A nearly seven minute drum solo from Palmer is included; that smacks of excess today but it was de rigueur at the time and shows up here rightfully. ELP only had one big radio hit, Lucky Man, and Lake performs it here without his band mates, his voice accompanied only by his own acoustic guitar playing. Renditions of Tiger in a Spotlight, Kim Fowley's rollicking Nutrocker, the Take a Pebble suite and C'est La Vie are highlights as are Hoedown and Fanfare for the Common Man, the show's opening and closing numbers in tribute to another of Emerson's heroes, Aaron Copland.
Emerson, Lake & Palmer - Live at Nassau Coliseum '78
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