Circus Live is a 3-disc live album by John Cale released on February 19, 2007. The contents were recorded live on the 2004 and 2006 European tours. One of the discs is a DVD containing rehearsal footage, a music video, and a two audio tracks.
One performance included, September 12, 2004, at the Paradiso in Amsterdam, was broadcast on air and online. Video of the entire concert is still available at the venue's live performance archive, Fabchannel.com. Video seems to no be longer be available on Fabchannel.com as indicated.
The ringmaster of the avant-garde, Mr John Cale, releases a double CD set Circus Live on February 5. Featuring artwork by long-time friend Dave McKean, the album is virtually a chronology of Cale's musical career; its inception began on 2005's blackAcetate: album when Cale backed by his new band (Dustin Boyer – guitar, Joseph Karnes – bass and Michael Jerome – drums), really hit pay-dirt on the subsequent tour.
Cale felt like he'd finally found the personnel to interpret his songs with new twists, new dimensions and new emotions. None more so evident than the track "Gun", originally appearing on 1974’s Brian Eno & Phil Manzanera produced Fear but now sounding akin to a heavy arsenal of crunching weaponry, a full sonic catastrophic force to behold. Inspired, Cale recorded the dates and the band began to tear up a 40-year musical history book, challenging and breathing new life into Cale's work. In full, confident stride they take in everything from "Femme Fatale", the Warhol tribute "Style It Takes", a capricious "Pablo Picasso", the sweet groove of "Hanky Panky Nohow" from Paris 1919, "Look Horizon" and "Zen" from 2003's Hobosapiens, the Neptunes-inspired funk of "Outta The Bag" and "Hush" from black:Acetate, an impassioned take of Presley’s "Heartbreak Hotel" and the viola-swathed VU masterpiece "Venus In Furs".
The album begins with a drone and ends with a drone. They signal the very start of Cale’s music career (as recorded in 1965 with LaMonte Young’s experiment the Dream Syndicate) and the closing point of this particular chapter. For the New Year finds John Cale twisting and bending his new brand of drone even further. Firstly with Juan Alderete of the Mars Volta on a forthcoming single "Jumbo in tha Modernworld", and then in the producer’s chair for adroit New York art-rockers Ambulance Ltd and their second album.