Rick Wakeman – The Myths and Legends of Rick Wakeman: Album Review

4CD Box Set featuring vintage concert recordings focusing on the mid-‘70s work of Rick Wakeman.

Release date:  May 2022

Label: Cleopatra Records

Format:  4CD set

A collection featuring vintage concert recordings that centre on The Myths And Legends Of King Arthur And The Knights Of The Round Table, The Six Wives Of Henry VIII and Journey To The Centre Of The Earth. But there is much more to savour too!

This package will appeal to those lifelong Wakeman followers and to those Yes fans like me who veered away from Rick’s solo stuff and would like to revisit his major works, which are released as live performances on this wonderful 4 disc set. 

The first live performance covers two parts of the epic Journey To The Centre of The Earth with on-stage dramatic narration. Next is an excerpt from Six Wives Of Henry VIII, Ann Boleyn, who was of course, rumoured to have an extra finger. Most would need to spout many more digits to play with the dexterity of Rick Wakeman. Rick’s love for his audience comes through loud and clear. At less  4 minutes might it might be short by Rick’s standards but a Concerto for American commercial TV is a splendid finale to this wonderful performance.

There may be a few repeat performances on the other 3 CDs but thankfully not much as is often the case with 4CD packages these days when we usually endure too many versions of the same tune. But not here even though his most well-known pieces of work are given full play throughout the package.

Other pieces included within the 4CDs are the awesome Music Reincarnate Parts III and  IV, from No Earthly Connection, both of which are included on two of the performances, and hidden hither and thither are various visits to short cameo pieces from non-Rick pieces on the 12-minute Recollection.

A 16-page booklet of  liner notes and  photos complete this package of  captivating  keyboard virtuosity Rick is clearly happy with the output in this package: “It’s really lovely to see some of the music I’m most proud of, released in a new way and presented so well… I’m still wondering though if I am more of a myth than a legend!!!” 

His legendary reputation is firmly established and deserved and like Arthur’s sword, clearly set in stone.

Rick Wakeman online: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

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