When Aerosmith got wind that their then-former record label, Columbia, was going to release a follow-up to the lifeless Classics Live!, the band wisely decided to get more involved this time around. The result is arguably the band's finest live album, even though it may be a bit short (not even 39 minutes in length). But the performances are vibrant and focused -- almost all were taken from the reunited lineup's New Year's Eve, 1984 gig at the Orpheum Theater. The only criticism is that, again, the majority of the tracks were already released as live versions (on 1978's Live Bootleg), and only three make their in-concert debut on record. Still, positively smoking versions of "Back in the Saddle," "Walk This Way," "Same Old Song and Dance," "Last Child," "Draw the Line," and "Toys in the Attic" rock out like no other Aerosmith live recording. The album's undisputed highlight is a fantastic rendition of the autobiographical early nugget "Movin' Out," as well as the title track from the Joe Perry Project's 1980 debut, Let the Music Do the Talking (which was subsequently re-recorded for Aerosmith's Done with Mirrors). Although Live Bootleg may contain more songs, the more succinct Classics Live! Vol. 2 succeeds with it's consistent, fiery performances.
AllMusic Review by Greg Prato