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John Wetton

Live in Argentina 1996

Review by G. W. Hill
John Wetton's known in some circles mostly for his prog rock work in bands like UK and King Crimson. His solo career, though, has a lot of AOR mainstream rock in it. This live album focuses more on the prog side. There are some great live renditions of songs from those two previously mentioned bands, along with Asia
and Wetton's solo work. It's a strong set with quite good audio quality.
Track by Track Review
Disc: 1

                  
In the Dead of Night

I've always loved this song. This comes in much like the original. The mix feels a bit more trebly than I would have expected, though. Still, the bass does manage to stand out, and you just can't beat the power and majesty of this tune, really. The fired up instrumental section on this is a bit harder rocking than the original studio take. It's no less potent, though.

Sole Survivor
This Asia tune has always been another favorite. I like this energized rendition. It's fairly true to the original take of the cut.
Only Time Will Tell
Another standout Asia tune, this is a solid rendition, too. It's high energy and pretty faithful.
Voice of America
Here we get an AOR based rock ballad. It's a classy tune that fits well with the last couple pieces. This is a solid rocking performance.
Book of Saturday
This balladic King Crimson number gets an interesting retelling here. The melodies are all familiar, but some of the trappings are a bit different.
The Smile Has Left Your Eyes

Here comes another from the Asia years. It's a solid version.

Thirty Years
Here we get another from UK. This balladic piece is so beautiful. I love this rendition. It runs into the next one.
Hold Me Now
Another ballad that's very evocative and pretty, I love this one, too.
Quilmes
This is a powerful keyboard solo. It has a lot of classical music in its mix along with electronic and prog.
Rendezvous 6:02
We're back to UK territory here. This is another strong version of the cut. It's fairly faithful and a great prog number.
Disc: 2
             

Thomas Lang's Drum Solo

As the title reveals, this is a drum solo. I'm not a big fan of such things, so this doesn't do much for me.

Caught in the Crossfire

More of a straight-forward, hard rocker, this is solid. It's not really a standout, though.

Easy Money
We're back into King Crimson territory with this hard rocker. I love this song, and this rendition really does it justice. When it moves out into the instrumental section later, they move it into new directions. It's still very proggy, but it's also quite different from the King Crimson version.
Battle Lines
There is a large chunk of jamming at the start of this piece. The cut eventually works to the song proper. It has a ballad vibe to it. It's an effective cut. It's an AOR rocker for sure.
Heat of the Moment
This Asia rocker gets a stirring performance. It's pretty faithful.
Starless
Here we get back to King Crimson. This is one of my all-time favorite Crimson songs, really. In fact, I think if I wanted to introduce someone to prog rock, and give them a song that represents the best of the genre, I'd pick this tune. I love this rendition, too. It's fairly faithful and very strong.
Don't Cry

The concert is closed with another song from Asia. This number lands more in the pop vein. Still, it's a strong tune.

 
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