K2 Live in Hollywood
The wait is over! K2's Book of the Dead live is finally here! This newly released DVD, features K2 in their current lineup, Josh Gleason on Vocals, Ken Jaquess on Bass, Karl Johnson on Guitar, Ryo Okumoto on Keyboards and Doug Sanborn on Drums. This impressive group performed their first live show on January 13th, 2006. This DVD showcases the power of K2 live and includes behind the scenes footage, a photo gallery, a bonus video from K2's Spring 2006 tour, and impressive menu's with new music composed just for this release. Following on the heels of their highly successfull debut CD, featuring Allan Holdsworth (U.K., Level 42) Ryo Okumoto (Spocks Beard), Ken Jaquess (Atlantis) violinist Yvette Devereaux and drummer Doug Sanborn (The Untouchables), this DVD presents Book of the Dead in a live setting. We invite you to step into the world of ancient Egypt with this impressive cast and be taken on a musical journey through the lives of the Pharaohs. Filmed live in Hollywood on January 13, 2006 before a packed house, this is a must have concert movie for fans across the prog genre. A true musician's musician ensemble and sheer prog bliss. Runtime: 90 minutes LostTales, Umbrello Music Entertainment
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Josh Gleason replaces the now-deceased Shaun Guerin on vocals; he's spot on with timing and effect - both vocalists sound a lot like Peter Gabriel. Youngster Karl Johnson replaces the peerless Allan Holdsworth on guitar, but nails his solos with perfection and really shines on this concert. And the violinist Yvette Devereaux is no longer with the band, but hardly missed - some of her parts were picked up by the keyboards.
Band founder Ken Jaquess still handles the bass duties as well as some string synths; Ryo Okumoto is fantastic on the keyboards; and Doug Sanborn is a riot to watch on the drums, using a lot of jazz technique, but playing hard too. The stage is very spacious and plain, and I would believe it if someone said it was a large studio. The description of this cd here claims they played "before a packed house", but the few times that camera angles caught glimpses of the audience, I could count no more than 20 or 30 sedate people present? It looked to me like a private viewing of the band before they hit the road.
Yet the performances here are arena-worthy! They start out with the first three tracks or "chapters" from "Book of the Dead", then a fantastic song from Jaquess' earlier band Atlantis called "Forest Cathedral", which segues into "Freefall" from Okumoto's solo album a few years back. They finish up with the final chapter from BOTD, and the Spock's Beard cover of a George Harrison song "Beware of Darkness". Fun, fun fun.
This band doesn't have much of a catalog yet, but what they do have is just primo stuff, and they reproduced it here with skill and passion. You also get a little snippet of the band practicing the first song in a home studio, as well as a little of their act on the road (in front of a larger crowd, on a smaller, cramped stage...).
This is very reasonably priced for the content. The sound is very good. I look forward to their next cd with this lineup recording.
4-1/2 stars for a very worthy dvd.