Forums > Personal > RUSH Exit Stage Left -- overdubbed?

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Holly2003 user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 22 May 09, 10:02 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I've often wondered in Exit Stage Left has been altered from the stage performance for the official release? Brilliant album, but I have a number of Rush bootlegs and Geddy lee sounds better on ESL than any other live performance I've heard, especially on Closer to the Heart.


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Posted: 22 May 09, 13:01 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Most Definitely overdubbed.

So was Grace Live and Show Of Hands.

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Posted: 24 May 09, 02:48 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

What would interest me is a list of live albums that weren't overdubbed.

I'll start it:

1) James Brown - Live At The Apollo

Or was it?




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Posted: 24 May 09, 02:52 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I had assumed that The Who's "Kilburn" show wouldn't have been overdubbed as it was never used in the film for which it was recorded,
but nope - that's had the hell dubbed out of the drums.  Obviously they forced Keith to give it another go before decided that none of the show was good enough for use in "The Kids Are Alright".



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Posted: 24 May 09, 04:19 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I'm guesing that AC/DC's "If You Want Blood" and Motorhead's "No Sleep Till Hammersmith" are largely untouched. Pearl Jam released a whole tour of soundboard recordings. I'm assuming MTV's "Unplugged" sessions went out "as is".

Not sure about the following:

Simon and garfunkel live in Central Park?
Bob Dylan's live albums?
BB King?

On a (much) smaller scale, I'm almost certain bands like The Dubliners and Planxty don't do much studio enhancment to their live releases.


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Posted: 24 May 09, 11:17 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Hi, Holly2003!

How are you doing? I hope you have a great sunday!

Well, back when I first listened to Exit...Stage Left, Rush was not a band of my choice, but my fathers' - he had the LP, and I remember liking the album and getting interested in the band. One of the songs I liked the most, ironically, was "A Passage To Bangkok" - the track they supressed, I guess, on the cd version. Afterwards, I had a very similar experience: I went through a whole lot of Rush's unofficial material and it was a "Passage to Bangkok" that left me with this doubt, because there wasn't a single performance of the song where the guitars sounded quite like in the album. 

All just to say that, when I bought a rock maganize, which featured some translations of interviews done by bands and rock artists, in a used book store, I read two interviews given by Geddy Lee and Neil Peart - both said they had really hated all the live albums they had produced, that they had been in fact traumatized by the experience of recording and releasing live albums, and it was only when they really noticed how much importance the fans accorded to the live performances that they went on to make things better - A Show of Hands was the landmark, they said: they recorded about every single concert they played in the tour, used one very good concert as the "root" or "base" and then they put together the material without studio overdubs.
 
As for Exit...Stage Left, Geddy Lee did say that it was heavily produced or, simply, overproduced, as compared to the previous one, which many had deemed to be too raw. He said that they did resort to overdubbing, especially for some guitar parts, though he made it quite clear that not a single second of Neil Peart's playing in the live album had been overdubbed. The overdubbing was restricted to some guitar parts and, here and there, to the vocals, though he stressed that it were minor details which had, I think, much more to do with their obsession with translating the studio sound to the stage than with the performances themselves: if one listens to the unofficial recordings, there are many, a bunch of them that could have been released without resort to overdubbs!

It's a witness to their usual brilliance on stage, anyway. As a live act, they do impress a lot - I went to all their concerts here in Brazil and I was really impressed: I guessed it'd be nice and so on, because I enjoy the band a lot, but I wasn't prepared for THAT. Great, great band. 

THANKS FOR BRINGING UP THIS THREAD, my dear.

May I hug you? No need to your girlfriend or wife to get jealous, it's only a friendly sunday hug!

[Hugging Holly2003]

--------------------------------------------------

Now, may you tremble with fear, the second part of the thread! 

People, there have been plenty of brilliant live albums without overdubs, I guess. One I'm sure about also happens to be one of the best live albums ever, as deemed by the "musical pundits": Etta James Rocks The House. It's a personal favorite and, yes, I can think of very, very few live albums which are good as this one - very few. It's just jaw-dropping.

Then, going to a different style, there's the wonderful gig by Ella Fitzgerald at Misters Kelly's, which has absolutely no overdubbs - plus, she was already dead upon its release, I think! - and it's a stellar performance, her vocals are among the best I have ever listen to from her, it's on a pair with her gigs in Rome and Munich. 

Now, I guess, but that's me guessing wildly, I guess that Allman's Brothers Live at Fillmore East has very few, if any, overdubbs, because the whole point of the live acts of the band was preserving the sense of jam and improvisation. Duane got to know Miles, he listened to Miles, he was not much fond of the idea of releasing something which was not the performance exactly as it was - with its great moments, flaws and so on. It was important to keep the challenge of improvising alive.
 
-----------

By, people! Have a nice, wonderful sunday you all!

Yara   




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Posted: 24 May 09, 12:02 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



Holly2003 wrote:

The Dubliners

Ever seen the Octopus Jig?  Sheer brilliance.




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Posted: 24 May 09, 13:24 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



 



Sir GH wrote:



What would interest me is a list of live albums that weren't overdubbed.

I'll start it:

1) James Brown - Live At The Apollo

Or was it?



2) Dire Straits - Alchemy

Definitely wasn't as this has been confirmed by Mr. Knopfler himself, if I recall correctly. Some songs were left out, nothing more. There are some mistakes in Tunnel of Love f.e. One of the best live albums I've heard. Highly recommended.








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Posted: 26 May 09, 13:09 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



Sir GH wrote:



 



Holly2003 wrote:



The Dubliners


Ever seen the Octopus Jig?  Sheer brilliance.

Just watched it on YouTube -- very impressive. Of course, all Irish people can do that. We're a naturally talented
race ;)







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Posted: 26 May 09, 13:53 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote







Rick wrote:



2) Dire Straits - Alchemy

Definitely wasn't as this has been confirmed by Mr. Knopfler himself, if I recall correctly. Some songs were left out, nothing more. There are some mistakes in Tunnel of Love f.e. One of the best live albums I've heard. Highly recommended.


Awesome... I'll have to check it out.  Thanks for the tip.



Holly2003 wrote:

Just watched it on YouTube -- very impressive. Of course, all Irish people can do that. We're a naturally talented race ;)

Well, my race can play a mean kazoo.  Take that !




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Posted: 26 May 09, 14:31 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

All The World's A Stage was not overdubbed.

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Posted: 26 May 09, 23:04 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



 



Micrówave wrote:



All The World's A Stage was not overdubbed.




Hi, Micrówave!

How are you doing, my dear? I hope you're doing fine!

Oh...first of all, nice to know that you enjoy Rush. I like their music a lot!

Hm...but I'm afraid "All The World's A Stage" was overdubbed too. :-)) Well, it's nothing relevant, in fact, because the band sounds wonderfully live anyway, but I guess it was indeed overdubbed to a very small extent - as I pointed out above, it's deemed, and rightly so, much more raw than "Exit...Stage Left", which was overproduced, in Geddy's words, and did have some good amount of overdubbs, though nothing really as to put in doubt the band's prowess on stage. 

Here's a very quick read, but very helpful which addresses, among other things, the minor overdubbs in "All The World's A Stage":

http://www.2112.net/powerwindows/transcripts/HarriganRush.htm

And here's a helpful quote: "The result of those three shows was the live album 'All The World's A Stage'. The band took the tapes of those concerts to their old familiar Toronto Sound studio and spent more than a month, working three or four days a week, remixing and dubbing.
Fortunately, for those who believe that live albums really should be live and not some bastard offspring of the studio and the stage, Rush used very few overdubs on 'Stage'. Geddy Lee promised that there were just a couple of vocals dubs and a little judicious grafting of a drum solo from one night into the body of the performance from another. And there were technical details that had to be ironed out too, such as the fact that Alex Lifeson had broken a guitar string during 'Working Man' on one night which was corrected in the studio.""

I hope it helps, my dear. And, above all, thanks for joining the thread and bringing up this wonderful album to the discussion.

Take care and have a wonderful day! :-))))

Yara






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Posted: 01 Jul 10, 10:58 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Any more undubbed live albums?

Thin Lizzy's 'Live and Dangerous' is supposed to be enhanced in the studio. However, I downloaded a bootleg of one of their shows, and The Cowboy Song is identical to the officially released version.

What about The Scorpions' 'World Wide Live'? I saw them live a few times and they sound just like the live album.


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Posted: 01 Jul 10, 11:05 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Live Killers from a band called Queen (ever heard of them?)

Damn, they sounded so tight in those days. Wish I could have seen them :(


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Posted: 01 Jul 10, 11:12 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Rick wrote: Live Killers from a band called Queen (ever heard of them?)

Damn, they sounded so tight in those days. Wish I could have seen them :( --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I love that album but it's definitely had some work done to it.


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Posted: 01 Jul 10, 12:41 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I think it'd be a worthwhile adventure to list the rock live albums that weren't overdubbed.  There sure aren't too many.

I'd start with the Yes, Genesis, and ELP live albums from the 70s.  They were excellent musicians, so chances are they could deliver the goods every night.

Let's face it, the reason why most rock live albums are overdubbed is because the famous bands usually don't have the strongest musicians.  They're unreliable from night to night, especially if they were on a diet of chicks and blow.  They had the creative genius that allowed them to create work that would be cherished for generations, and the rare magical combination of the right 4 or 5 guys was a force to be reckoned with - but their actual abilities as musicians are a whole different thing.  For example, Fool's Overture is a brilliant piece of music by Supertramp, but in just about every live version of that song I've heard, the keyboardist makes mistakes in the main organ theme.

The best musicians played with guys like Jean-Luc Ponty, Al DiMeola, Zappa, and Bowie.  You can bet your life that guys like Daryl Stuermer and Adrian Belew have played not more than a few wrong notes in their lives, and that not a single note on records they've played on required any patchwork.  Guys like Tommy Emmanuel and Chet Atkins play/played music that's 10x harder to play than virtually all existing rock music, and never do/did they miss a note.


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Posted: 01 Jul 10, 12:55 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Holly2003 wrote:



Thin Lizzy's 'Live and Dangerous' is supposed to be enhanced in the studio. However, I downloaded a bootleg of one of their shows, and The Cowboy Song is identical to the officially released version.


This is directly from Tony Visconti's website regarding Live And Dangerous

"We listened and listened and listened -- to at least 30 hours of tape recorded during many gigs, from Toronto to Philadelphia to London! We definitely had something, but the task of choosing the right takes was awesome. When we did, Phil asked if he could touch up some vocals. No harm in that -- this is commonly done for live albums because of technical faults, like microphone wire buzz and other gremlins. The trick to getting a studio vocal to sound like a convincing live vocal is to sing the song in the same way. Otherwise the live voice will poke through if the new voice is not in sync.

We spent a few days re-recording a few vocals. It went very well. Once we established a sound and a system to do this, Phil suggested that we might as well redo all the vocals. So we did. Then we noticed that Gorham and Robertson were not on mic for backing vocals half the time. If you listen closely you can hear Phil doubling the backing vocals at the same time he was singing lead! Then Phil realized that he'd missed a few notes on the bass when he was singing live. Could we replace some bass parts? "Of course!" I said. We did. The bass was harder and more precise and so ALL the bass parts were replaced. In walked Scott Gorham and Brian Robertson. Since it was so easy to replace Phil's parts, could they redo theirs? "Of course!" But now it was obvious that this was not completely live anymore. The guitars, bass and vocals were replaced -- just Downey's drums and the audience reaction were left! Fortunately Downey liked his playing and we kept ALL the drums.

I've gone on record before saying this album was 75% recorded in the studio, so I hope I haven't shattered any illusions. Still, the album went platinum, reaching #2 on the British charts, and it deserved it. Every track was performed before a live audience with the exception of "Southbound". There weren't any good takes of the song recorded in concert, so we used the recording made during the sound check onstage in Philadelphia and dubbed in the intro and outro audience reaction from that night's show.

Because the original recordings lacked certain details I had to resort to some trickery when Phil asked for audience participation. For instance, on the breakdown of "Rosalie" Phil asks the audience to "put yer hands together". I boosted up the audience tracks and there was a wildly enthusiastic audience clapping like mad, but the band was far louder. I couldn't use those tracks because the band would've sounded too echoey, picked up by the high audience mics. So I made a 20-second loop of the audience clapping for an encore. I put the loop through electronic gates that were triggered by a note from a keyboard. The loop was silent until I played a note on the keyboard. So when I played quarter notes (crotchets) it sounded like the audience was clapping along. Remember, they'd been clapping along that night but the mics just didn't pick them up loud enough. Also, at the end of this track the tape ran out and I had to edit in the audience reaction from the end of another song. That's why it literally sounds like a burst of applause at the end.
Despite the necessary trickery this album is very real. It represents electrifying moments before an audience and fabulous second chances to get it right in the studio."

http://www.tonyvisconti.com/artists/thinlizzy.shtml


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Posted: 01 Jul 10, 13:16 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

@Mr Mercury -- thanks for that. However, I'm still trying to reconcile what I've been told about the album with the Philadelphia bootleg, which has almost identical music.


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Posted: 02 Jul 10, 01:20 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Holly2003 wrote: Rick wrote: Live Killers from a band called Queen (ever heard of them?)

Damn, they sounded so tight in those days. Wish I could have seen them :( --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I love that album but it's definitely had some work done to it.
You did spot the sarcasm, I hope? ;-)


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Posted: 02 Jul 10, 04:28 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Sir GH wrote:

What would interest me is a list of live albums that weren't overdubbed.

I'll start it:

1) James Brown - Live At The Apollo

Or was it?


2) Queen - Live Magic
I've been surprised that they haven't overdub this one, especially when you think how many times Freddie's voice cracked during the Knebworth concert