Anyone who has ever had any question, let alone doubt, about the unique, soul-stirring qualities of Eddi Reader's wondrous singing has only to listen to this live album to be floored, and then converted. Recorded on Fairground Attraction's only tour of Japan while supporting their unexpected hit album, The First of a Million Kisses. Fairground Attraction were a pop group to be reckoned with in the live arena as well. Featuring all the hits from the first album, such as "Winter Rose/Allelujah," "Perfect," "Find My Love," and "Whispers," among others; all were performed in grand style, and recorded stunningly well. But more importantly, featured here are live renditions of eight songs never released by the band; they were being tried out in front of audiences before Fairground got into a studio to record their follow-up. The band imploded three days into it. While it's true that the songs on First of a Million Kisses belied the band's relative inexperience as a touring unit, cuts like "The Waltz Continues," "Don't Be a Stranger," "Home to Heartache," "Broken by a Breeze," and "Goodbye Songtown" offer a view of the band in full possession of their strengths as instrumentalists and singers. Mark Nevin's later songs are even more adventurous, much more tight, and searingly heartfelt, than their predecessors, and Reader's live singing is nothing short of inspirational. This is a must-have, not only for Fairground fans, but for those who live and breathe for flawless Celtic pop.
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AllMusic Review by Thom Jurek