Various Artists

Progfest '97

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A magnificent souvenir of one of the most legendary prog events of the 1990s, PROGFEST 97 serves up almost two hours of live footage from the gig, and is as solidly excellent as it ought to be. The long awaited companion, of course, to the 1997 live CD package, the quality of the filming is not always great, often feeling murky and/or distant -- the view from halfway back in the room indeed! But performances from Le Orme and Spock's Beard (two songs apiece), John Wetton (four tracks), the Flower Kings, Arena, Big Elf and Sinkadus (all with one) are electrifying regardless, and if a handful of the CD's favorite moments are absent, the appearance of a Wetton cut that missed the earlier release, the superlative "Soul Survivor", should make up for that disappointment.

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