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The Tea Party – Live From Australia

| 3 October 2012 | Reply

Label: Self-released, funded by Pledge Music campaign
Released: 29 September 2012
Reviewed by Melissa Harrison-Ward

This is an album I have been eager to have in my hands for quite some time, particularly since seeing Jeff Martin, Jeff Burrows and Stuart Chatwood on their reformation tour a few months ago. Sounding as tight as ever, the boys do not disappoint as they play through their set list to enthusiastic and jubilant crowds. Yes I said set list, as the tracks appear in the same order as they were played at, I imagine, all the Australian concerts. This would have to be one of my only gripes with the album and that is with the editing that has been done, although a live album, you do not feel you are there with the crowd as you only tend to hear them at the start and end of songs with the occasional audience interaction/sing-a-long, with a very noticeable pause between each song, it doesn’t have that same smooth transition between songs that other live albums do. With that being said it is still, a great album for any Tea Party fan or even introducing some new fans.

Playing an eclectic mix of songs from their collection, the majority coming from Splendor Soils and The Edges of Twilight, it is noticeable that there are no offerings from albums after 1999’s Triptych with the exception of Lullaby from 2001’s The Interzone Mantras and a fleeting nod to Martin’s solo efforts during Sun Going Down.

Having been to the concerts it may also be worth noting to anyone who has been to the latest or even previous gigs, do not expect to hear any of the covers that The Tea Party so often move into during their songs, you will not get that on this album. Upon thinking about this, I am quite happy to not have that distraction and am able to truly appreciate the music.

Highlights for me included a version of The Messenger which I actually prefer to the original Triptych version and from the same release, Heaven Coming Down. Until the recent reformation, it seemed that this song was rarely played live and was an absolute treat to hear its beautiful melody on here.  Fan favourites The River, Fire in the Head, Temptation and Sister awake do not disappoint with their ability to make you just want to rock out and turn it up to eleven.

All in all Live from Australia is a great album for fans and those new to the band to have in the collection. For someone wanting a complete live experience, I would suggest checking out the soon to be released DVD which was recorded at The Horden Pavilion in Sydney and I dare say will satisfy your need for what was missing from the live album.

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Category: CD Reviews

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