Rick Wakeman — Wakeman with Wakeman: The Official Bootleg
(Griffin GCRW 156, 1994, 2CD)
by Dan Casey, Published 1994-10-01Straight from the mixing board on their recent mini-tour, Adam and Rick Wakeman have released this lengthy 2CD live set. The material ranges from classic Rick (Six Wives, Journey, King Arthur) and recent W+W studio material to covers of Beatles and Stones tunes, all of which has been very well recorded and produced to yield a sound quality far beyond what we normally associate with the term 'bootleg.' Backing musicians Tony Fernandez and Alan Thomson (electronic drums and bass, respectively) provided the live rhythm section but this set is obviously a synthesizer orgy and rest assured there's enough synth here to drown in. Adam and Rick light it up with all modern gear and techie-types will pick out the trademark Roland JD-800/990 and Korg O1W/WS/T1 patches easily, especially the electric guitar lead sounds. Rick once prided himself in always using his own sounds (never factory presets) to create his own identity, but that notion has dropped by the wayside for this tour, perhaps due to the haste in which it was thrown together. Adam and Rick work well together, in fact so well that you can never be sure who is playing what parts, but it would be nice if the young Wakeman can find his own identity rather than follow in his dad's footsteps. Musically, all the typical Wakeman flourishes are here: rapid 16th note arpeggios, Bach-like motifs and embellishments, and the always corny honky tonk blurb. Unfortunately the music always draws from the same set of predictable and limited classical influences, and if you've heard it once you've heard it a thousand times. Rick has always had better technique than taste in writing and with two discs of two Wakemans, that adds up to about three too many. The whole package is overkill, plain and simple. Recommended only for die-hard Wakeman freaks.
Related artist(s): Rick Wakeman
New Aristocrats Live Album on the Way – No foolin'! These supreme musicians toured Europe early in 2020, just before touring ceased to be a thing musicians could do, and there were some hot performances captured. On May 7, some of these will be releases as Freeze! Live in Europe 2020. » Read more
Jewlia Eisenberg RIP – The sad news has come out that Jewlia Eisenberg has died. As a founding member of Charming Hostess, Eisenberg changed the face of music, bringing together Balkan klezmer, American folk, and experimental rock in a distinctive blend that garnered much praise. » Read more
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more