Live Kreation

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This classy, limited-edition, two-CD set not only serves to point out that English is Kreator's second language ("Revisioned" Glory, anyone?), but also offers a stunningly comprehensive 20-year retrospective for one of thrash metal's more compelling and influential acts. First and foremost is the double-disc audio live show, which stitches together 24 tracks recorded at various points during the German thrashers' ludicrously extensive 2001-2002 tour. It carefully spans the band's ten-album back catalog, from early speed metal freakouts ("Awakening of the Gods," "Tormentor") to classic, mature mid-period thrash ("Extreme Aggression," "People of the Lie") through the band's mid-'90s experimental period ("Lost," "Golden Age"), as well as a large chunk of 2001's return-to-form record, Violent Revolution, all recorded cleanly (maybe a bit too cleanly) and given a nice, hot mix by noted engineer Andy Sneap, who helps accentuate the formidable prowess of vocalist/guitarist Mille Petrozza's crew as a live act. It's obvious that Live Kreation/Revisioned Glory was lovingly and meticulously assembled -- the packaging and booklet are excellent, chock-full of colorful photos and art, and the live recordings sound inspired.

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