The great live albums of 1968-1972 that changed the history of...

The live albums below are abundant in these qualities..... They may not be perfect. But that's where their splendour lies...

9 live albums from 1968-1972 that changed the history of...

A concert album - what is it? What is its uniqueness, its value? Why do live recordings of the 70s-80s cost fabulous money today?

Well, the thing is that a live album is a kind of a guide between a listener and a band... Yes, yes! It is with the help of a live record that a music lover gets a colourful idea of this or that band... Anyway, that's what happened in the mentioned era of the last century. Alas, but not everyone had money for tickets to the now cult rock monsters such as Cream, The Who, The Rolling Stones... But a record was quite an affordable pleasure.

Flipping through the musical history of those years, one can't help but wonder: is there even one really cool live album today? Unfortunately, most modern artists spend too much time and energy in the studio... They want everything to sound right, perfect... And this is a huge mistake, because the listener needs live energy, live drive!

The live albums below have these qualities in abundance... They may not be perfect. But that's where their splendour lies...

The best live albums from 1968-1972...

Cream - Wheels Of Fire (1968)

Cream - Wheels Of Fire (1968)
Cream - Wheels Of Fire (1968)

Cream gained an army of fans thanks to their improvisational flights of fancy... Their music literally undermined the bridge that had long separated rockers from jazz territory.

The album Wheels Of Fire was a cult coup not only for Cream, but also for many other rock bands who decided to follow in the footsteps of their British colleagues and claim their rights! You could say that Wheels Of Fire caused a "gold rush" among rock musicians.

This record remains one of the most exciting "live" works of rock music ever recorded on tape.....

MC5 - Kick Out The Jams (1969)

MC5 - Kick Out The Jams (1969)
MC5 - Kick Out The Jams (1969)

At the end of the 60's MC5 was at the peak of its creative prosperity! The thirst for freshness made the band not just borrow "specialities" from their more popular colleagues, but make them their own!

With the release of Kick Out The Jams, it was clear to everyone: the MC5 were completely defining the sound of rebellious industrial hard rock at the time....

But... not everyone was happy with the record.

Wayne Kramer, the band's guitarist:

"We were an active but inconsistent band... During this gig we had the wildest pressure from the audience. Every time I listen to this record, I think: "Damn, I'm making such stupid mistakes on guitar... Rob's voice was often better!". I know we were capable of more..."

The Who - Live At Leeds (1970)

The Who - Live At Leeds (1970)
The Who - Live At Leeds (1970)

Whatever The Who did, they did it brilliantly! Pete Townsend's work has always been at the peak of its craft, a quintessential combination of heavy and melodic....

Half a century later Live At Leeds remains a "rock gem" of that period... The album sounds so alive, so vivid... It's hard to describe in words. You have to feel it in person.

Grand Funk Railroad - Live Album (1970)

Grand Funk Railroad - Live Album (1970)
Grand Funk Railroad - Live Album (1970)

Just as the band that created it gave new meaning to the description "power trio", so this album set the template for all that we now know as stoner rock....

The record was sold as a "straight record" - without any overdubs, remixes... Well: Grand Funk Railroad really managed to keep it real...

The most interesting thing here is probably the album cover. For some reason, the designer used a photo of the band taken at the Atlanta International Pop Festival, even though none of the songs on the Live Album were recorded there.

The Rolling Stones - Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out! (1970)

The Rolling Stones - Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out! (1970)
The Rolling Stones - Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out! (1970)

The Rolling Stones' Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out! album was conceived not so much to document the performance at Madison Square Garden as to emphasise that the new line-up (featuring Mick Taylor) had formed very well!

The result was one of the first live albums to be recognised as the best! In essence - Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out! launched a mania for live recording that would flourish vigorously throughout the next decade...

The Allman Brothers Band - At Fillmore East (1971)

The Allman Brothers Band - At Fillmore East (1971)
The Allman Brothers Band - At Fillmore East (1971)

Before the release of At Fillmore East, the band was having a good time in a hippie bar. No wonder The Allman Brothers Band soon became real rock stars!

The original double vinyl version was released in both stereophonic and specially mixed four-channel quadraphonic versions. But the main feature of this album was the playing... The record proved once again that The Allman Brothers Band is a first class band with first class music!

Success came to the album a few months after its release! Unfortunately, Duane Allman didn't catch it... The guitarist crashed on his motorbike....

Humble Pie - Performance Rockin' The Fillmore (1971)

Humble Pie - Performance Rockin' The Fillmore (1971)
Humble Pie - Performance Rockin' The Fillmore (1971)

Humble Pie were certainly impressive in the studio. However, it was the live format that proved to be more successful and meaningful for the band!

The double album, recorded at New York's Fillmore East in May 1971, was a magnificent display of Steve Marriott's sizzling vocals and his frenetic interplay with colleague Peter Frampton...

Slade - Slade Alive! (1972)

Slade - Slade Alive! (1972)
Slade - Slade Alive! (1972)

Slade may not have been cool, but they were an exciting live band who built their reputation on the wild energy of their live shows...

Slade's manager, Ches Chandler, decided to put an end to the decline in the charts - capture the band's inner appeal on a live LP! And it worked. Recorded for £600, Slade Alive! not only elevated the band to the Olympus of fame in the UK, but also became the best-selling album in Australia since the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band!

Deep Purple - Made In Japan (1972)

Deep Purple - Made In Japan (1972)
Deep Purple - Made In Japan (1972)

An iconic album from Deep Purple!

In the early '70s, Japanese culture had barely touched Britain. The idea of a rock band playing there was truly exotic. In fact, Made In Japan was a groundbreaking release born in a faraway land: it had a mysterious, otherworldly effect that other live albums recorded in much more down-to-earth places could not match....

Ian Paice, drummer for Deep Purple:

"This is probably the best live rock 'n' roll album ever made. It contains everything that Led Zeppelin did, everything that Black Sabbath, Bad Company, Free..."


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