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Progressive Rock DVD/Video Reviews

RPWL

The RPWL Live Experience DVD

Review by Ron Fuchs

I was first aware of RPWL when I received Stock back in 2003 for reviewing. I was instantly hooked and began collecting their albums. The band over the years retained a “signature” sound which encompasses influences by Pink Floyd, Genesis and others. All the while, though, they kept up with modern sounds.

In 2007, I got to see them perform at BajaProg. They exceeded my expectations and further ranked as one of the better newer prog bands out today. I was hoping they would have put out a DVD of their BajaProg performance since the band was widely received by the audience. I’m sure others would have loved to revisit that concert as I did. We got the next best thing, a DVD of their performance at the Progrock Festival 2009 in the Wyspiaski Theatre in Katowice, Poland.

The RPWL “Live” Experience was released on DVD in 2009 by Metal Mind Productions. The band was even better form than I remembered, which was a happy surprise. The editing of the main concert is top notch and looks even better than most “mainstream” DVDs. The band seemed to enjoy the response from the audience.

Personal highlights of the main part of the DVD are their renditions of Syd Barrett's “Opel” and Pink Floyd's “Biding My Time.” These two covers stay true to the originals for the most part. The only difference between the original and the RPWL version is the modern feel to the band’s playing.

Other highlights include an amazing live version of “This Is Not A Prog Song.” This is the band’s response to the prog purists and it’s done tongue-in-cheek. The projector footage behind the band added to the experience. They also did a tongue-in-cheek medley that included rearranged versions of Steve Miller’s “Keep On Rockin Me Baby” (“Keep On Proggin Me Baby”), Status Quo's “Rockin' All Over The World” (“Proggin' All Over The World”) and The Scorpions' “Rock You Like A Hurricane” (“Prog You Like A Hurricane”). Other bands would have been more confrontational to those prog purists but RPWL answered in this humorous way instead. I would have loved to have experienced this as the audience did that night in February.

The bonus material includes tour footage from 2006 (with a demo version of “Sleep”). There’s interview footage and a “cute” video of the song “Breathe In, Breathe Out” with some rather ugly animation on it. 

This video comes in two editions, a DVD only and a limited edition which includes a double CD of this show. I guess it depends on the fan as to which one they should get. Either way, this is a highly recommended DVD. Thank you to RPWL and Metal Mind Productions for this release.

This review originally appeared at Prognaut.com.

 

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2010  Volume 4 at lulu.com/strangesound.

 
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