Leslie West

Live

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One of the most indulgent live rock albums ever released was undoubtedly Mountain's Twin Peaks from 1974, which included a never-ending, over half-an-hour (!) long version of "Nantucket Sleighride." Luckily, the 1993 live album from Mountain guitarist Leslie West, Live, does not commit any similar flubs. Once considered to be one of rock's top guitarists -- with a style that was a more heavy metal-esque take on Eric Clapton's playing circa Cream -- West by the '80s committed the same blunder that a lot of other veteran guitar players did around this time. Instead of sticking to the style that garnered him recognition in the first place, he attempted to keep pace with the young bucks (namely Eddie Van Halen) by attempting to incorporate modern techniques into his playing, resulting in a muddled and unoriginal style. While some of Live shows that West was still coming out of the wilderness, for the most part, you're treated to solid readings of such Mountain classics as "Never in My Life," "Theme for an Imaginary Western," and of course, an album-closing reading of "Mississippi Queen."

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