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Live Cream Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered, Live

4.8 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered, April 7, 1998
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Editorial Reviews

The first of two post-breakup live albums.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. N.S.U.
  2. Sleepy Time Time
  3. Sweet Wine
  4. Rollin' And Tumblin'
  5. Lawdy Mama


Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 7, 1998)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered, Live
  • Label: Polydor
  • ASIN: B0000067L5
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,760 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
'Live Cream' was released in June of 1970, more than two years after most of the tracks were recorded at the Fillmore West and Winterland sites in San Francisco, and 3 years after 'Lawdy Mama', the predecessor to 'Strange Brew', was laid down at Atlantic Studio's. All of the live tracks are extended versions of songs found on the band's first studio release, 'Fresh Cream'. There is a 'Live Cream - Volume Two' (released in March of 1972) disc also available, and those tracks are drawn from Cream's second and third studio releases, 'Disraeli Gears' and 'Wheels of Fire', so it appears some forethought and planning went into these live documents. Together with live tracks from 'Wheels of Fire' and 'Goodbye', there is as much live material available from the band as there is studio work.

Since 'Fresh Cream' was primarily a blues-rock album, 'Live Cream' exudes the same feel. On most of the numbers, however, such as the opener, 'N.S.U.' and 'Sweet Wine', the blues are fairly rapidly clicked up a notch as the band jams in rock mode. While 'N.S.U.' only timed out at 2:47 on 'Fresh Cream', it burns for over ten minutes here, while 'Sweet Wine' keeps pouring out for over fifteen minutes. Mercifully, especially given the year was 1968, we are spared any extended drum solo's, although if any drummer was worthy of an extended drum solo, it would be Ginger Baker. 'Sleepy Time Time' and a fine cover of Muddy Water's 'Rollin' and Tumblin' are only broadened by a few minutes over their studio counterparts on this disc. Jack Bruce contributes all of the lead vocals while Eric Clapton supplies occasional background support. The musicianship is exemplary, with Bruce's bass improvisations predominant.
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Format: Audio CD
This recording was one of the first I have heard of Eric Clapton. His performance on this recording is exemplary. Although most of us are probably most familiar with his work on "From the Cradle" and the single "Tears in Heaven", Cream is a point in time of Eric's career that any Clapton fan would most likely find enjoyment from listening with an open ear. The music is much heavier than anything he has done since those times(1966-1968). He teams up with Jack Bruceon vocals, bass, and harmonica and Ginger Baker on drums. These gentlemen were highly regarded jazz musicians on the the London Scene in the mid-sixties. When listening to these recordings, done live at various venues in the States in March of 1968, one will see the high energy and explosive inventiveness in Clapton's playing that has not been heard in any of his other groups. Bruce and Baker push him to experiment with tone, phrasing and volume. His solo on "Sleepy Time Time" is especially juicy and "Sweet Wine" is a nearly 17-minute journey into the then-uncharted territory of jazz-rock. Other recommendations for live Cream include "Wheels of Fire" (Crossroads, Spoonful), "Goodbye" (live versions of Sittin on top of the World, Politician and I'm so Glad), and , if available, Live at the Grande Ballroom in Detroit (Oct 1967) is an example of Cream at their highpoint with Clapton experimenting with feedback techniques ala Hendrix.
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Format: Audio CD
This is quite simply the greatest live album ever made. Astonishing performances of great songs, wonderfully recorded and mixed. From the opening notes of NSU to the crescendo close of Sweet Wine, the sonic attack never lets up for a second.

Jack, Eric and Ginger were like three racehorses desperate to cut loose from the gate. The nature of their musical relationship has to be unique in music history. All three having huge competitive egos, they were still totally, absolutely in sync at this magical moment in the short life of Cream. The resulting combined firepower is breathtaking; no wonder no other band wanted to be on the same bill. Clapton is simply phenomenal, and he is by far the weakest of the three musically. Bruce and Baker take the creative spirit to another level, completely free of cliche or repetition.

The heart of the matter is Sweet Wine, essentially a throwaway tune from the first album. Here it is the launch pad for the most complex, evolving, intuitive improvisation in the history of electric music. 35 years later, this music continues to shock and awe and astonish. Play it as loud as you can physically stand it.
1 Comment 25 of 28 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
This album was released after Cream broke up. It is an amazing collection of 4 live tunes ranging from 6 to 15 minutes long. This is power trio jamming at its best. It is an excellent fusion of jazz, blues and mostly rock. While there is alot of Eric Clapton and his guitar solos, there is much intriguing interplay with Ginger Baker on drums and Jack Bruce on bass and harmonica. Overall, it is much more complex and energetic than the live material on Wheels of Fire, and far superior to the follow up Live Cream II.
The fifth song, Lawdy Mama is a short, interesting studio artifact It is Cream's version of a traditional blues tune that eventually evolved into Sunshine of Your Love.
If you like Cream, the best bet is to get the box set Those Were the Days. It includes all 6 Cream albums plus other unreleased material.
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