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Meat Loaf Live At Wembley CD Review

November 1, 2013



(Hear No Evil)

Remember the days when Meat Loaf was a credible live singer? Those days may seem far away now, so this live album reissue is a welcome reminder of his onstage prowess. He was once an incredible showman who dominated the stage with both his voice and over the top personality and you can hear his enthusiasm in every song on this ten track recording. He is on fire. At the time Meat Loaf’s career had gone down the tubes in most countries, particularly his native United States, but in the UK and Australia where ‘Bat Out Of Hell’ originally broke before anywhere else Meat Loaf could still fill some of the biggest arenas such as the giant concrete slab that is Wembley Arena. In 1987 when this live album was recorded the success of the ‘Bat Out Of Hell’ years seemed remote as he struggled to match up to its success, which is ironic given how sluggish the album was to become a success.

Recorded in March 1987 over two nights at Wembley Arena, Meat Loaf was on the road to promote the now long-forgotten album ‘Blind Before I Stop’ and he opens up the show with its title-track. There are a few obscure gems only remembered by seasoned fans such as ‘Modern Girl’ and ‘Rock ’N’ Roll Mercenaries’ as well as the obvious cuts like ‘You Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night)’, ‘Paradise By The Dashboard Light’ and obviously ‘Bat Out Of Hell’ amongst others. The set is closed with a catchy collection of old rock ’n’ roll classics dubbed ‘Rock ’N’ Roll Medley’. His band, the Neverland Express, at the time consisted of drummer Chuck Burgi, bassist Steve Buslowe, keyboardist Frank Doyle, pianist Paul Jacobs, lead guitarist Bob Kulick, guitarist Alan Merrill and singers Amy Goff and Elaine Goff. There’s no faulting the performances of the band or Meat Loaf himself.

‘Live At Wembley’ remains his best live album. Remember him for how good he used to be rather than the sad joke he has become as evidenced on the recent CD/DVD set, ‘The Guilty Pleasure Tour’.

Copyright Neil Daniels © 2013

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