Friday, November 12, 2010

Tribute Series: Amazing Journey

As I was researching the horrible news of Mike Pornoy leaving Dream Theater I stumbled upon a series of tribute shows he, and several other musicians, took part in in the 2000's. I have not been listening to these in order (instead opting to listen in the order that most appeals to me), and so will not be reviewing them in order, but they are pretty sweet, and fairly unknown. So I think they deserve some sort of mention.

The second album of this series I have heard, Amazing Journey is a tribute to The Who and consists of Paul Gilbert (Racer X, Mr. Big), Billy Sheehan (UFO), Gary Cherone (Extreme) and Mike Portnoy (Dream Theater).
When compared with their work on Cygnus And The Sea Monsters, One Night in New York City is a much better representation of The Who's catalog. The group hits all of their major hits, and even plays the majority of the album Tommy in it's entirety (skipping a few of the 'spoken word' tracks of the original), a real bonus. Some editions come with a bonus EP of another night's recording. All of the songs from this EP are already in the collection, so it's a bit odd of an add, but it's still nice to hear s different version of the songs (as live shows often vary from night to night).

The singer, Paul Gilbert, does a much better job emulating Roger Daltrey then his attempt at Neil Peart, making these tracks much better for the ears of The Who's fans. He belts it out with the best of them for classics like "Baba O'Riley" and "Who Are You?," but does have a bit of trouble with the earlier rock opera work of some of the songs off of Tommy, but it's easy to accept ignore these few occurrences. One song I really enjoy, almost better then the original even, is "A Quick One, While He's Away." The dueling vocals (someone else joins in for this one) and superb instrument accompaniment is worth it for the whole album.

This one is for The Who fans and just for fans of rock and roll. It's got a little for everyone, and a little of each of the eras of the band. Amazing Journey is a fitting title for this amazing tribute to one of the gods of rock music. And as Mike Portnoy said (on one of the tracks) "Great fucking bands don't get old, they just die."

Track Listing
Disc 1: The Hits

  1. Baba O'Riley
  2. Sister Disco
  3. Substitute
  4. Pictures Of Lily
  5. I Can See For Miles
  6. Young Man Blues
  7. A Quick One While He's Away
  8. Bargain
  9. Behind Blue Eyes
  10. The Real Me 
  11. Love Reign O'er Me 
Disc 2: Tommy
  1. Overture
  2. It's A Boy
  3. 1921
  4. Amazing Journey / Sparks
  5. Eyesight To The Blind
  6. Christmas
  7. The Acid Queen
  8. Pinball Wizard
  9. Tommy Can You Hear Me?
  10. There's A Doctor
  11. Go To The Mirror
  12. Smash The Mirror
  13. I'm Free
  14. Tommy's Holiday Camp
  15. We're Not Gonna Take It
  16. Who Are You
  17. Won't Get Fooled Again 
  18. My Generation  
Disc 3: Bonus EP
  1. Young Man Blues 
  2. A Quick One While He's Away 
  3. Amazing Journey / Sparks
  4. My Generation

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