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Royal Albert Hall May 2005

Price: CDN$ 21.82 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Royal Albert Hall May 2005 + Live At Royal Albert Hall [Blu-ray]
Price For Both: CDN$ 41.81

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Oct. 4 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Warner Bros
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #25,476 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. I'm So Glad
2. Spoonful
3. Outside Woman Blues
4. Pressed Rat & Warthog
5. Sleepy Time Time
6. N.S.U.
7. Badge
8. Politician
9. Sweet Wine
10. Rollin' & Tumblin'
11. Stormy Monday
12. Deserted Cities of the Heart
13. Born Under A Bad Sign
14. We're Going Wrong
15. Crossroads
16. Sitting On Top of the World
17. White Room
18. Toad
19. Sunshine of Your Love

Product Description

Cream, the legendary band of Ginger Baker, Jack Bruce and Eric Clapton, performed for the first time in 37 years in May 2005. One of the most highly anticipated reunions in rock, the concert at London's Royal Albert Hall-where the band played its farewell show November 26, 1968-returned to the stage the trio that forever changed rock 'n' roll. Now the best of those historic peformances are available on Royal Albert Hall London May 2-3-5-6 2005. Reprise. 2005.

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Audio CD
This is the best live album I've heard in years. Yes, Jack Bruce's voice is not as strong as it once was, but the whole package is fabulous. I've seen Eric Clapton a few times, and this is the tightest and busiest that I've ever heard him. (Watch the DVD to see how he really gets into it.) Jack Bruce is one of the most underrated bass players in rock, and Ginger Baker is still one of the more entertaining drummers, in any era.

If they decided to take it on the road, I'd be the first in line to buy tickets.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on Oct. 19 2005
Format: Audio CD
The editorial review for this album is absolute horse puckey! I haven't actually heard the album but I have the DVD, and if they're the same music, this is the best Cream album yet. Sure, they're older and (maybe) a bit slower but they are also tighter, more focused, and less prone to enter into pissing contests. This is what music is all about when three seasoned professionals with nothing to prove to anyone but themselves, get together. They may not be as rocking as the Stones (they never were), but neither are they as hackneyed. And, unlike the Stones, who have become a pastiche of themselves, Cream's stuff is as good as, or better than, it was 35 years ago. Buy this album now!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 128 reviews
118 of 140 people found the following review helpful
LESS CLOTTED CREAM.... Oct. 7 2005
By o dubhthaigh - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
... than before. Cream was always one of those shizoid bands: studio efforts overdubbed, well produced psychedelia, live shows a tsunami of three soloists having a go at it simultaneously on an Anglo-blues catalogue. Here, for the first time I can remember hearing, they play more like a BAND. There is a locked in cohesion to this show that was never present before, as you can clearly hear when you compare this to the farewell show from '69. These three coined the cliche "supergroup" and were known for playing with a ferocity fueled by their competitive egos. Perhaps as age has slowed them all down and as time has taken its toll on them and their colleagues, the notion of working more in step with each other brings more significant rewards.

It certainly does to the material. Their take here on Willie Dixon, Booker T Jones, Skip James and T-Bone have all the swagger of the masters and less of the youthful unrestrained testosterone of the late 60's. "Born Under a Bad Sign" and "Spoonful" would make their authors proud. "Badge" suffers from Clapton having so thoroughly redefined it with his band that it seems nothing but perfunctory here. However, Baker's bizarre reading of "... Wart..." is so weird that it seems to have gained in its spooky evocation of something both Dickensian and psychedelic. In the case of each of the musicians, they are clearly listening to each other and playing better as a unit than you would ever have any right to expect. There is a supple pwer and subtlety to how integrated they are in each other's rhythms that is inspiring. Given the mediocrity of Clapton's BACK HOME, this is a delightful return to form. He isn't the GOD that he was on Cream's first surfacing, but that was just another way of clotting the music from flowing. All the years have served each of them well. They have not just not missed a beat (still with me?), they're actually a much better band.

The DVD is spectacularly shot. It is the kind of rock film Martin Scorcese would shave his bushy eyebrows for. Miraculously, Baker has survived well. Bruce looks almost as old as Steve Howe, and Clapton is amazing. It is a joy to watch their technique as they play. This really was a brilliant coda that eclipses the original legend. There is much to celebrate on both CD and DVD here. Enjoy!
50 of 59 people found the following review helpful
Cream Is Back Oct. 7 2005
By P Magnum - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
The original power rock trio Cream reunited for the first time in thirty-seven years for a string of concerts at the place they played their last shows, Royal Albert Hall. Anyone expecting the band to be as fierce and experimental as they were then is just unfair. Most acts mellow with age and lose their youthful aggression. Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce & Ginger Baker are no different. Despite this, the band is quite tight on the album. There aren't the lengthy jams of the old days, but that is made up for by sharper and more focused playing. Mr. Bruce's bass is still quite heavy and although he can't hit all the high notes, his voice is still fluid. Mr. Clapton doesn't cut loose as much, but his phrasing and styling is impeccable. Mr. Baker's drumming is less erratic and adds a more solid backbeat. All the favorites like "Crossroads", "White Room", "Sunshine Of Your Love", "I'm So Glad" and "Spoonful" are included as well as some nuggets like "Pressed Rat & Warthog", "Deserted Cities Of The Heart" and "Badge".
26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
Best Classic Rock DVD EVER! April 8 2007
By Roger E - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
A review I read about the Live CD's of Cream in the 1960's not inspiring, well I can say to you, "Cream's reunion 2005 DVD". I can not stop watching this performance, it is so outstanding. Eric Clapton's fantastic guitar work during this reunion is inspirational, and is essential listening to any Cream or Eric Clapton fan.

Eric, with original members Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker performing like the superstars of old, rock the Albert Hall to the delight of thousands who were fortunate enough to be there. For us, the unlucky, this great 2 DVD Set can be ordered, and when played on a surround sound/ big screen system, this show comes alive. With outstanding editing, a high quality soundtrack, excellant near HD quality picture, this concert is at the top of my top ten list. This DVD sets the standard for outstanding music DVD videos.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Cream Is Back, and It's About Time March 15 2006
By Tony Howard - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
When this band formed in the mid-1960s, Eric Clapton envisioned Cream as a blues trio. As history has shown, things didn't quite turn out that way. Forty years later, Slowhand finally got his wish. There are blues numbers here in abundance from the likes of Willie Dixon, Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, T-Bone Walker, Albert King, and Skip James. Recorded 37 years after their final proper concert at this same venue in 1968, time may have ravaged their looks, but definitely not their playing. As another reviewer has stated in these pages, Cream acts like a band this time around rather than as a group of egotistical soloists going for the jugular night after night as they did "back in the day." The jams for which Cream are renowned are kept to a tolerable length. Most songs on this collection clock in around 5-6 minutes. Those that do go long (Stormy Monday, Spoonful, We're Going Wrong, Sunshine, Toad) do not suffer as a result.

As it was back in their heyday, each member is afforded his own showcase. For Jack Bruce, it's "Rollin' And Tumblin'." On this number Jack, accompanied by his harmonica (no bass), Eric playing the slide, and Ginger Baker on the drums, stuns and amazes the crowd with an energy that belies the fact that the man nearly died in 2003. Eric Clapton's showcase is the T-Bone Walker classic "Stormy Monday." This is a new song for Cream as it was never on an official Cream release until this collection came out. Slowhand demonstrates that when he wants to, he is the master of the blues guitar. The man was simply on fire the night they recorded this song. Ginger Baker's showcase was, of course, the drum solo "Toad." By and large, drum solos are usually excuses to head to the bathroom or the concession stand. Not so here. "Toad" is simply compelling. It's isn't boring - it's Ginger Baker demonstrating that yes, the drum IS a musical instrument. By the time the solo ends you don't realize it had gone on for over seven minutes. It's that good!

The big surprise of this whole collection is Ginger's song "Pressed Rat and Warthog" from "Wheels of Fire." On the DVD that visually documented this reunion, Ginger told the interviewer that he was "threatened with execution" by his family if he didn't play this song. At a little over three minutes, this is the only hint of psychedelia that Cream shows throughout the set. Slowhand plays it straight - not a wah-wah pedal to be heard, and frankly it isn't missed (much). Jack Bruce is in fine voice throughout. Of interest is the band's different take on White Room. Instead of Jack Bruce singing the entire song as he has done since he wrote it, Jack sings the first two verses, Eric takes the refrain of those two verses, then the two swap roles for the third verse and refrain. Eric's song "Badge" had never been played live by Cream as it was recorded at the end of their 1960s run, and here Jack Bruce proves once and for all to hear that if you took his bass lines away from the song, there would be no song.

There are lots of plusses on this collection. The jamming is kept to a tolerable length, hence more songs to enjoy. The volume is lower than in their heyday, so the musicians can hear each other, and the interplay between the musicians makes for some outstanding music. One need look no further for proof of this than Cream's take on "We're Going Wrong". Thirty-seven years ago this band was full volume pedal to the metal jamming. Today this band plays like adults - it swings! Credit that to Ginger Baker, who plays more like a jazzer these days (when he does play). There is one minus - no "Tales of Brave Ulysses" (they fixed this oversight when they played MSG in October 2005). Other than that, this collection is a worthy addition to Cream's legacy. Buy it now!
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
A Grand Return June 24 2006
By Tim Jewell - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
If you asked several average music listeners to name the best and most influential bands of the 60's, you'd be hard-pressed to find Cream on those lists. Cream was a staple in the diet of the average 60's music fan, but nowadays, hardly anyone remembers their name (although their song "Sunshine of Your Love" has become a hit despite no one knowing who they are). When compared to other in their vein of music (Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, etc.) Cream was definitely a step above the rest. Each of the band members were highly talented and beyond the rest of their kind, offering non-standard instrumental stylings like nothing the world had even seen up to that point. No band took the blues-influenced rock style farther than Cream, and no other band did a better job of it. Though Cream may have faded into obscurity among modern music listeners, any true music fan must appreciate the influence and skill that this band has.

Though it seemed impossible, the band got back together over a year ago for their long-anticipated reunion. Many fans, young and old, traveled far and wide to witness history in the making as the 60's greatest players made a return to their glory days. Some were skeptical of the band's ability to play their old songs after nearly 40 years of hiatus, but the trio proves everyone wrong by performing impeccable versions of classic hit songs like "Crossroads" and "Toad" (an impressive feat for a 67 year-old who looks like he should be in a retirement home rather than beating some excellent rhythms from his drum set). Jack Bruce, lead singer and bass player, can still belt out tunes like "Sunshine of Your Love" and "Born Under A Bad Sign" and moves his fingers nimbly about the fretboard of his bass with a professionality seen in very few bass players (it's hard to find a truly great bass player in this day in age), proving that he is still one of rock's greatest bass players. Secondly is critically-acclaimed guitarist Eric Clapton, who often makes the lists of rock's top 10 guitarists because of his pure talent and melodic voice that interchanges with Jack Bruce on various songs. I was glad that he did this reunion, because I wasn't really a big fan of Clapton's solo career because it was a step down from his wonderful blues-inspired guitar stylings of his Cream days, especially the cream of the crop (don't mind the overused pun) "Crossroads", possibly Cream's greatest hit. Now he proves that he can still play the complex solos and improvisations of yesteryear after a long, unimpressive discography. (am I the only person who doesn't like that song "Layla"?) Lastly is drummer Ginger Baker, who is possibly the most impressive of the three. Not many can play the drums as well as he did and still does, even at the age of sixty-seven. Ginger Baker is often placed too low on lists of the world's greatest drummers, seeing as he was highly influential and had a style all his own, beating out others like John Bonham (who was most likely influenced by Baker) and modern loves like Lars Ulrich (who really isn't that great of a drummer in the grand scheme of things). Unlike many drummers of that age, he doesn't just sit there and beat on the drum kit merely to keep the beat and add that extra punch; there is real progression in his drumming and subtle complexities that you to really listen for. Even in his old age, "Toad" is still compelling, though not as fast as before, and really blows you away.

Bottom line: Cream was one of the 60's greatest bands and has become underappreciated since their glory days, so this live reunion album is a good way to reintroduce them into the modern music scene as great even today. If you're a longtime (or even original) Cream fan then you probably already own this, but for all you out there who are looking to be inspired in spite of the adversity of today's mainstream, then pick this album up as well as their wonderful studio recordings, mainly "Wheels of Fire". Cream may not have been around long, but the impact they made on the progression of rock remains one of the strongest.