Live At The Royal Albert Hall With The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra


Eagle Records, 2016

REVIEW BY: David Bowling


Heart is a Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame band and Ann Wilson has one of the best voices in rock and roll. As the old saying goes; "she could sing the phone book and make it listenable." Any Heart release -- especially a live album -- that features her voice has a lot going for it.nbtc__dv_250

Heart's decision to perform at the legendary Royal Albert Hall with the Royal Philharmonic orchestra was a sound one. It was a new way to present their music, which for a band four decades into their career is interesting. I wish the orchestra could have been a little more involved in the overall creation of the sound, but all in all they do add some extra layers and textures to the material.

They mostly take the safe route in the selection of material, combining many of their well-known classics with some newer material. Songs such as "What About Love," "These Dreams" and "Alone" fit the approach of The Royal Philharmonic well. They all have an atmospheric quality to them and Wilson's voice soars above the music.

The hard rock tracks such as "Magic Man," "Barracuda," "Crazy On You," "Dreamboat Annie" and "Kick It Out" are more challenging as far as combining the rock group sound with the orchestra. They may not be as consistently excellent, but they are interesting as they present the songs in an unique way.

I have read suggestions that the sound of the Blu-ray release is not up to modern standards, but to my ear the CD sound is excellent. Rather than release another straightforward concert album, Heart decided to travel in a different direction. Live At The Royal Albert Hall should be a treat for their fans.

Rating: B

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