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|5. People Like You|
|6. Transmit Your Love|
|7. Forever May Not Be Long Enough|
|8. Call Me A Fool|
|10. The Ride|
|11. Nobody Knows|
|14. Hero Of Love|
|15. Bonus Track|
On Live's fifth album, V, the earnestness of their impressive 1991 debut has completely disappeared. Everything about this album feels forced and overproduced. Electronic beeps and loops swirl through songs like a U2 record gone bad. Guitar solos squeal in overarching metal-band style and front man Ed Kowalczyk's vocals are so overdramatically pained, you can almost feel the veins popping off his neck for the most mundane subject matter. Even the band's use of Eastern influences feels slapped on, as in the intro to the nu-metal disaster "Like a Soldier". The guest appearance by Tricky--a partnership that only Kowalczyk's appearance on the last Tricky album can match in oddity--feels like nothing but a gimmick. What started out as an American alternative rock act has sadly become just another attempt at grandiose sound with invisible substance. --Jennifer Maerz
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Top Customer Reviews
If you're looking to really get into to Live then I suggest starting from the beginning. Pick up a copy of "Mental Jewelry" (though that album isn't really for everyone seeing as it was never really looked at by the mainstream). A surefire album that most will definitely enjoy is "Throwing Copper" (it showcases everything that I ever associated the band with.) "Secret Samadhi" showcases a darker side of the band it's the follow up album to 'Throwing Copper'. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to listen to many songs from "The Distance to Here," but I hear it's an amazing album.
And for all you diehard Live fans -I feel your pain. I don't know what got into the band as musicians or when it came to the production of this album. I'm still a fan of Live, and there are a few songs off the album that grew on me but I don't consider this a "Live album", it's a completely inadequate portrayal of them as a band. I see this album more like a corporate media mistake than anything else.
I respect that they tried something new but it really didn't work for them at all. The lyrics are shallow and lack that soulfulness that Ed always incorporated into his work. I didn't mind the sampled beats too much except the fact that it didn't work for this band at all. This album reminded me of a terrible fusion between Creed and Linkin Park.
All in all, the album is somewhat catchy but it lacks everything I ever expected from Live. I forgive them, considering a few songs really aren't bad but this really wasn't them.
Well to be frank this is still my least favorite Live album, except for maybe Birds of Pray, which too is a less than stellar work. With "V" Live remains Live, with a few added bells and whistles. The album brings with it the optimistic, lighter energy of "Distance", and if the album has one unquestionably positive characteristic, it's the energy -- it pulsates out of the album. Gone, however, is the general feeling of alternative/rock, replaced mostly with a nu-metal-esque sound that has replaced a lot of the guitars with a great deal of electronics and samples. If you thought "Distance" was overproduced, you're going to be sobbing when you hear "V".
But the thing is, this album did grow on me. My initial reaction wasn't unlike almost throwing up and having to swallow; I just couldn't belive what I was hearing. That said, once I (forced) myself to spin the CD a few times, the more positive elements did in fact shine through. Melodically, this is still a very strong work, and quite creative. The hooks, while not quite as impressive or long-lasting as Live's previous efforts, are there. The vocals and harmony are interesting and varied, and when tinkered with electronically, actually invite some welcome and novel musical soundscapes.
The downside is the songs aren't nearly as memorable as most of Live's others, they're mostly fun-in-the-moment ballads but don't linger on too much thereafter.Read more ›
The music reflects this. And just as one might suspect, it walks a fine line between fair and terrible. With appearances from Tricky, filtered vocal effects, sampled instruments from Eastern continents, and lyrical depths that call upon late-night parties that involve "sweaty thongs and sweaty backs," almost all of V sounds like a huge commercial outing with no soul to speak of. Zip, zero, nada. It's hard to believe these were the same guys that made Throwing Copper, or even The Distance To Here.
While there are no great songs, parts of these songs sound decent. Transmit Your Love and Like A Soldier are examples of tunes that could have been much better if Live would have just followed their instinct. But we have to take V as it is. As for me, I can never listen to Forever May Not Be Long Enough without rolling my eyes.
Most recent customer reviews
I wouldn't say that I'm one of the die-hard Live fans, but I've certainly listened to their songs on the radio and caught their videos. Read morePublished on Jan. 23 2004
It's so funny to read the scathing reviews of this CD by hardcore fans of the band. What tremendous courage it must take to stay committed to an album when you know your fans are... Read morePublished on Jan. 17 2004
I bought Secret Samadhi and V today. I liked Samadhi OK, but by the 6th song on V my mouth was agape. I can't believe the scathing reviews I've seen on this album. Read morePublished on Jan. 17 2004
No, it may not sound exactly like the previous albums, but if it did, why buy it? V is still LIVE even if it doesn't sound like you expect it to at first. Read morePublished on Jan. 5 2004
i swear, a band goes out on a limb, and OH NOES, THEY AREN'T GOOD ANYMORE.
come on. i was just reading reviews for birds of prey, and i couldn't believe what i was seeing. Read more
I'm sorry, I love this album. I make no apologies about it. Live to me was always a band that wrote great songs, but not great albums. Read morePublished on Dec 4 2003 by Michael Bukowski
This is one of there best albums so far. I know that it more mellow then there last ones. But that what makes it so great. It rare to find an album that all the songs are good. Read morePublished on Nov. 26 2003
What the heck happened to Live? I suspect that Ed Kowalczyk has been sampling the same substances as Scott Stap of Creed. Read morePublished on Nov. 13 2003 by Peter Tupper