Review Summary: Brilliant and powerful as the cover art suggests.
Great bands give great live shows. A concert is where an artist has the opportunity to showcase his/her talents and apart from the actual performance, charismatic bands tend to add a special touch during their gigs either visually or simply with their music. One solid example is Iron Maiden’s legendary Live After Death
. On that album, Iron Maiden have infused their songs with so much energy that has been rarely documented resulting in a stunning album overall. Live and Dangerous
is similar to Live After Death
exactly in that department.
Even though Live and Dangerous
was released nine months after Bad Reputation
, it was actually recorded during two different time periods. Therefore, some of the tracks are from the Johnny the Fox
tour whereas others come from the tour in support of Bad Reputation
. Nevertheless, this has no negative effect on the final outcome as the level of performance and the amounts of energy are consistent throughout this live album.
There are moments where Thin Lizzy sound a bit constrained on their studio releases, maybe intentionally. However, this is not an issue here as this album is dynamic, fun and includes almost every highlight from their brilliant career at the time. In songs such as “Emerald” and “Massacre” the band sounds as powerful as it never did on studio while on “Dancing in the Moonlight” and “Still in Love With You” they slightly alter the instrumentation resulting in magical performances especially on the latter track. What is more, Thin Lizzy is all about the dual guitar sound and harmonies; Live and Dangerous
is plain and simple one of the best specimens of twin guitar sound. There are beautiful harmonies, blistering solos and quite a few solid riffs courtesy of Gorham and Robertson. If twin guitar sound was brought to the forefront by Wishbone Ash and The Allman Brothers, Thin Lizzy definitely took it to the next level. Moreover Phil Lynott, an underappreciated vocalist, gives an excellent performance while playing some very sweet bass lines at the same time. In fact, his bass is very prominent on this release along with the guitars whereas the drums are a bit on the background. In addition, the order of the tracks seems to be well thought as it helps maintaining the high level of oomph this album is known for.
In conclusion, since its release a lot has been mentioned about the originality of the finished product but according to the band’s manager “at least 75% of the album is original” while according to the band, slight changes have only been made in aspects such as backing vocals. Additionally, if in some magical way "Roisin Dubh (Black Rose): A Rock Legend" could have been included, the album could have been even better. One way or another though, Live and Dangerous
is hands down one of the very best recordings of live rock music and an album that every fan of hard rock should listen at least once.