Steeleye Span

Live at Last!/Sails of Silver

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This BGO two-fer from 2014 pairs Steeleye Span's 1979 live set Live at Last with Sails of Silver, a 1980 record that saw their mid-'70s lineup reunited and was produced by Gus Dudgeon. As the title suggests, Live at Last was the long awaited first-ever live album from Steeleye Span, something that would normally be a cause for celebration, but the group was at something of a crossroads, its lineup in flux and not quite at its peak. Generally, the group wasn't as loud or muscular as it once was, so this doesn't serve as a portrait of the band in full flight; rather, it's a transitional record, one that gains some interest in hindsight but is still flawed. Sails of Silver, produced by Gus Dudgeon, is also a transitional album, finding the group reunited but not quite returned to form. Amid some signature Steeleye folk are some attempts at soft rock, attempts that are quite appealing in their own right but are redolent of 1980; it's clear they were gunning for a hit but didn't succeed. This means this two-fer isn't among the purest of all Steeleye Span recordings, but it's nevertheless fascinating to hear this group undergoing a transition.

Track Listing - Disc 1

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Track Listing - Disc 2

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blue highlight denotes track pick