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Carnegie Hall Performance

4.1 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews

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Audio CD, April 25, 2006
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Editorial Reviews

As "America's Foremost Commentator On Everything", Black is a weekly political commentator on Comedy Central's "The Daily Show With Jon Stewart" and has starred in four top-rated comedy specials for the network. He's one of the nation's top standup comics and has done numerous films and TV appearances (Caroline's Comedy Hour, Evening At The Improv, The A List, Love From Tompkins Square Park, Comic Cabana, Make Me Laugh, Comedy Showcase, Friday Night, and more), and is seen regularly on Late Night With Conan O'Brien. His first two CDs are consistent sellers. This is his biggest launch to date
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 25, 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Comedy Central
  • ASIN: B000EQ46L4
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #140,827 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Lewis Black's more recent recordings have seen him retreading over a lot of familiar material. The Luther Arts cd included almost a word for word performance of his End of the Universe work over Britney Spears and the Super Bowl.

This cd set sees Lewis back on the top, with energy to spare, for an hour and a half of ranting, raving, and anger-laden comedic gold. While he does touch bits that he has touched before (most notably in his book), his performance here doesn't just feel like a repeat. Candy Corn has always been one of my favourite Black rants.

His energy last him for all 85 minutes, which is surprising since he is such an "anger-comic," and one would typically expect to run out of this energy after maybe 50 minutes. Not here. There are no typical long pauses or uneasiness that accompany even 45 minute performances of most comics. Lewis instead blasts his material out one after the other after the other, giving you just enough time to really laugh before getting you ready for the next joke or story.

It is difficult to judge a comedy album, because comedians are so varied, as are people's tastes. For most people, you either like Lewis Black or you don't. For me, he is approaching a cynical, yet honest portrayal of the US that has not been reached since Bill Hicks. He is almost an extension of Bill Hicks himself. Bottom line - if you like Lewis Black already, this album will not disappoint. If you like Lewis, but feel that his last album or two have been kinda let-downs, this album will delight you. And if you don't like Lewis Black, give this one a try. It's his best work since The End of the Universe, and almost rivals his best work on both that album and the White Album.
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Format: Audio CD
Yeah, I'll gladly recommend this album because it's Lewis Black and it's a LOT of him. I'm not gonna get bogged down in the issue of "Does it really stand up to his end of universe album? It's inferior to his performance on Feburary 7th 1995 at a small coffee shop back in Springfield Ohio..." Let's get past all that shall we? Thanks.

Here's why I say BUY IT. First off, it's a lot o' bang for your buck. I'm always happy when a comedy album is a double. I like a long performance (provided it's good.) I like hearing someone really get in a flow and go for as long as is necessary. Here, Lewis has his opportunity to take all that rage and dumbfounded disbelief at the world and just put it all out there.

And it's good stuff too. Lewis can WRITE, he can TELL STORIES too. His story about performing his surgically sanitized material with Dick Cheney sitting next to him is a priceless listen. Lewis cranks out entertaining stuff that is still MEATY too.

One of the things that got me about this album though that I finally figured out just the other day is this. As a rule I USUALLY don't like comedy recordings in LARGE VENUES. I'd rather hear a recording done in a small club. It's more intimate, you can hear the personality of an audience reaction. Most large show recordings, the audience just washes out into a rolling wave of laughter that waxes and wanes at the appropriate times. It usually lacks feel. For some reason, I'm OK with that on this album and I finally figured it out. In this album, Lewis is also ORATING, and it feels very much in place with the large hall size. For this particular recording it actually feels right.

Anyway, I gladly recommend this to anyone looking to widen their comedy collections.
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Format: Audio CD
I'll try to keep this short because I wrote a thesis on this CD and erased it five minutes ago. Why? You are wondering about this CD and whether to buy it.

It's not his best complete performance but there are tracks on the CD that will beat almost any routine you can think of (even Italians who Just Saw Rocky -- Eddie Murphy -- by a nose no pun intended). Maybe I am dissapointed that I did not see it live. Still, he carries the audience (and listener, me) because he is just a schmuck up on the stage spewing amazingly funny stuff out of nowhere. Another aspect that I admire about this CD is that his pace is different. His style is different. He could be the pissed off guy you work with who doesn't shut up except 100 times funnier. So...

Lewis Black fans- you know you are gonna buy this CD so forget it.

Comedy Central fans (ie those who have seen him a few times on TV)- cough up the money if not for the entire performance but for some unforgettable tracks.

Comedy fans in general- It's hillarious to listen to but first just get a glimpse of the guy on TV or broadband. Then sit back and enjoy.

Everyone else- I think in these days of confusion, lies, partisanship, apathy, terrorism, atomic bombs, whatever-- track eight, disc two should be required reading/listening.
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Format: Audio CD
The Grand Majesty of Carnegie Hall, the name, the fame, quitessential respect. The heir to angry comedy finds his throne on a respectable stage at last. I bought this album because it's required to buy his albums as soon as they hit stores when you own a funny bone. I am also desperate after memorizing every Bill Hicks album I own. This isn't a bite on Lewis, though, he's a funny mofo all by his self.

At the very outset, Lewis Black seems to think he's obliged to explain why he's there at Carnegie. He goes straight through the factors of his conception to his influential Jewhood. This seems very boring in the beginning, relaying his history, but I guess that's mid-life combined with playing a famous Opera house that he says he dreamed of playing when he started.

The entire two discs easily constitute a, "My Life" ordeal, contemplating his own thinking on a big stage where he feels reborn. He apparently was thinking very big, and put his entire history as a comic into this performance. Gone are the oft breakup rants, replaced by the controlled rants. He combines what seems to be a 'bibliography & biography' with his political, intrapersonal, and stage-presence comedy. Hitting every current event, especially the then-recent Hurricane Katrina, and the Terry Schiavo fiasco, is a forte that few comics have anymore.

One thing I continuously have to revel about, is that this album seems so huge, gigantic and all-encompassing. Lewis spent his time on Rules of Enragement, and the White Album being ideosyncratic, erratic, and very comfortable. His Luther Burbank Performance was very fresh, but without a whole lot of lasting substance.
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