King Biscuit Flower Hour:
Greatest Hits Live

Emerson, Lake & Palmer
Greg Lake

From the King Biscuit Flower Hour come two newly remastered reissues from the ELP camp. The Greatest Hits Live set from Emerson, Lake and Palmer is taken from two performances: March 7, 1974 in Tulsa, Oklahoma during the Brain Salad Surgery tour; and November 12, 1977 in Wheeling, West Virginia during the Works tour. Previously issued in 1997 as a double-disc set with two additional tracks and an interactive CD-ROM, the single disc nonetheless features the proggy power trio at their very best. Maybe "Hoedown," "Still...You Turn Me On," "Lucky Man" and "Karn Evil 9" sound like they were directly lifted from the triple live Welcome Back My Friends, etc. album, but you can't argue with the quality of these remasters.

Greg Lake's musical ambitions from the early 80s, which can be heard on his Greatest Hits Live CD from the Hammersmith Odeon in London on November 5, 1981, obviously had a lot to live up. Even with guitarist Gary Moore at his side, Lake's solo work limped along, struggling to break out of its progressive shell into something more basic and edgier. "Nuclear Attack" is probably the closest thing to a true solo hit ("I Believe In Father Christmas," notwithstanding) he's ever had. The disc includes its share of ELP classics like "Lucky Man" and "Karn Evil 9," plus "21st Century Schizoid Man" and "In the Court of the Crimson King," two cuts from the one and only album Lake made with King Crimson. While they are all undeniably Lake's greatest hits, these songs really need the bands they originated from.

~ Shawn Perry

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