Welcome Back, My Friends, to the Show That Never Ends ~ Ladies and Gentlemen
|Welcome Back, My Friends, to the Show That Never Ends ~ Ladies and Gentlemen|
|Live album by Emerson, Lake & Palmer|
|Released||19 August 1974|
|Recorded||February 1974, Anaheim Convention Centre, Hollywood, CA during 1973–1974, worldwide tour|
|Emerson, Lake & Palmer chronology|
Welcome Back, My Friends, to the Show That Never Ends ~ Ladies and Gentlemen is the second live album by the English progressive rock band Emerson, Lake & Palmer, released as a triple album in August 1974 on Manticore Records. It was recorded in February 1974 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California during the group's 1973–74 world tour in support of their fourth studio album, Brain Salad Surgery (1973).
The album was a commercial success, reaching number 4 on the Billboard 200, the band's highest charting album in the US. In the UK, the album peaked at number 6. The album is certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for 500,000 copies sold in the US. Following its release, Emerson, Lake & Palmer took an extended break from writing and recording.
The album was recorded in February 1974 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California during the group's 1973–74 world tour in support of their fourth studio album, Brain Salad Surgery (1973). Its title comes from the introduction to the show spoken by the show's Master of Ceremonies and the opening line of "Karn Evil 9: First Impression, Part 2".
To record the album, staff and equipment were brought in from Wally Heider Studios in Los Angeles, including a 24-track mobile recording unit and a 40-input console. Peter Granet, one of the engineers, called it "the finest recording experience I've ever had". The band used a Quadrophonic PA system on the tour, allowing a Quadrophonic mix of the album to be released on three 8-track cartridges. A four-channel sound LP, known as Quadradisc, was planned for release but it was scrapped due to engineering issues with master recording which prevented JVC, the manufacturer, from cutting a stable master to meet the format's specifications.
Most of the recordings on the album were first used for broadcast on the American rock music radio show, The King Biscuit Flower Hour. In 1999, the radio recordings were released on CD.
AllMusic gave the album a mixed retrospective review, saying that it "makes one realise how accomplished these musicians were, and how well they worked together when the going was good." They praised the set for including all but one song from Brain Salad Surgery, and particularly commended the performance of "Karn Evil 9" as being far superior to the studio rendition. However, they noted that unlike most live albums of the era, Welcome Back did not incorporate studio overdubs, limiting the band's ability to recreate moments from their albums and resulting in poor sound quality: "Even the most recent remastered editions could not fix the feedback, the occasionally leakages, the echo, the seeming distance – the listener often gets the impression of being seated in the upper mezzanine of an arena."
- Side one
- "Hoedown" – 4:27
- "Jerusalem" – 3:20
- "Toccata" – 7:21
- Side two
- "Tarkus" – 16:42
- "Stones of Years"
- "Battlefield" (including "Epitaph")
- Side three
- "Tarkus (Conclusion)" – 10:42
- "Take a Pebble" (including "Still... You Turn Me On/Lucky Man") – 11:06
- Side four
- "Piano Improvisations" – 11:54
- "Take a Pebble (Conclusion)" – 3:14
- "Jeremy Bender/The Sheriff" – 5:26
- Side five
- "Karn Evil 9: 1st Impression" (includes Percussion Solo (Con Brio)) – 17:26
- Side six
- "Karn Evil 9: 2nd Impression" – 7:36
- "Karn Evil 9: 3rd Impression" – 10:17
- Disc one
- "Hoedown" (Taken from Rodeo) (Aaron Copland, arr. Keith Emerson, Greg Lake & Carl Palmer) – 4:27
- "Jerusalem" (Charles Hubert Hastings Parry, William Blake, arr. Emerson, Lake & Palmer) – 3:20
- "Toccata" An adaptation of Ginastera's 1st piano Concerto, 4th movement (Alberto Ginastera, arr. Emerson) – 7:21
- "Tarkus" (Emerson, Lake) – 27:24
- "Take a Pebble" (Lake) (including "Still...You Turn Me On" (Lake) and "Lucky Man") (Lake) – 11:06
- Disc two
- "Piano Improvisations" (including Friedrich Gulda's "Fugue" and Joe Sullivan's "Little Rock Getaway") (Emerson) – 11:54
- "Take a Pebble (Conclusion)" (Lake) – 3:14
- "Jeremy Bender/The Sheriff" (Emerson, Lake) – 5:26
- "Karn Evil 9 (Emerson, Lake, Sinfield) – 35:21
- "Karn Evil 9: 1st Impression" (includes Percussion Solo (Con Brio)) (Emerson, Lake, Palmer)
- "Karn Evil 9: 2nd Impression" (Emerson)
- "Karn Evil 9: 3rd Impression" (Emerson, Lake, Sinfield)
- Emerson, Lake & Palmer
- Greg Lake – producer
- Andy Hendriksen – engineer
- Peter Granet – engineer
- Michael Ross – package concept and design
- Carl Dun – photography
|RIAA – US||Gold||19 September 1974|
- "Billboard Hot 200 via AllMusic". allmusic.com. Retrieved 15 February 2012.
- "Circus Raves". Circus. August 1974. Retrieved 8 October 2016.
- Bruce Eder, François Couture & (2011). "Welcome Back My Friends to the Show That Never Ends: Ladies & Gentlemen, Emerson Lake & – Emerson, Lake & Palmer | AllMusic". allmusic.com. Retrieved 26 July 2011.