Fireworks

Mad Max - 'Live In Berlin: Official Bootleg' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/8f/c5/85/1717_madmaxliveinberlinofficialbootleg_1323373701.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     December 08, 2011    
 
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Only for completists and die-hard fans.

The absurdity of fate can rarely be demonstrated better in musical terms than watching Michael Voss play for around 40 people fronting his band Mad Max at Z Rock, then a mere 3 months later playing to 35,000 at High Voltage as Michael Schenker’s new lead vocalist. In both instances Vossi showed he certainly has the chops, and hopefully his relationship with Schenker will bear more fruit. Certainly the two new songs aired on the recent Black Country Communion tour augur well for the future.

But for now, let’s jump back two and a half years to January 2009 when Mad Max were touring to promote their latest release, ‘Here We Are’, and this, the resulting ‘Official Bootleg’ from that tour. Well, first of let me say that I’m a big fan of Mad Max, with ‘Night of Passion’ being one of my favourite albums, but their latter-day output didn’t quite hit the spot for me. In fact, I never even knew the album ‘Here We Are’ had been released in 2008, although listening to the soporific opening duo of ‘Where the Winds Blow’ and ‘Here We Are’, maybe that’s not such a bad thing.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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I mean really, with a live show you really need to grab the audience by the throat from the opening intro and take them on a thrilling ride, not bore them rigid. Not until third track, ‘Night of Passion’, do things pick up, and we hit a purple patch with ‘Family of Rock’ and ‘Little Princess’ before ‘Say Goodbye to Hollywood’ and ‘Open the Eyes’ drag things down again.  ‘Don’t Talk it All Over’ adds a spark, before ‘Homeless’ and ‘Hope To See You’ move swiftly to prevent any hope of ignition, and it’s only on the final track, a rousing rendition of The Sweet’s ‘Fox On The Run’ that the party really starts. But by then it’s all over. 

I was never a great fan of touching up live albums, but Mad Max’s ‘Live In Berlin’ is exhibit A for the defence. Of course, it is not offered as anything other than a ‘live bootleg’, but even at that, this is certainly an album that is only for completists and die-hard fans.

Believe me, Mad Max will make a proper live album in the future, with a set-list far more in keeping with the wishes of the fans - and that will be a CD well worth waiting for.

Bruce Mee

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