Many would argue that music is an art form which is best appreciated live.
You just can’t beat the feeling you get from witnessing your favourite musicians in concert. The buzz of hearing a treasured song played out, the roar of the guitars, the beat of the drums, or basking in the unique atmosphere in a crowd full of like-minded folks are special experiences for sure.
Concert albums have long tried to capture those sounds and stir those emotions once again. They also act as a time capsule to a previous time or place. The likes of Thin Lizzy’s Live and Dangerous, The Who’s Live at Leeds or Cheap Trick at the Budokan all act as a permanent reminder of each of these legendary bands at their peak.
Having been touring relentlessly since the release of her sophomore album Lose Control, British singer, songwriter and guitarist Chantel McGregor felt that now was the right time in her career to record her first-ever live album. Having always been fond of The Apex theatre in the Suffolk town of Bury St Edmunds, McGregor decided this would be the perfect spot for her forthcoming release which is aptly titled – Bury’d Alive.
Producer/drummer extraordinaire Wayne Proctor has once again done a sterling job of producing, mixing and mastering the record, ensuring that there is a lasting record of the magic that occurred at the Apex Theatre on the night of the 29th March 2019.
With this record, Chantel presents key cuts from her first two studio albums along with previously unreleased material.
Bury’d Alive opens with a pair of tracks from McGregor’s last album in the shape of Take The Power and the ferocious Killing Time. Each of these tracks put forward a heavier side to Chantel’s playing which we witnessed on the second album Lose Control.
Whilst the faster tracks on the record may well showcase Chantel’s lightning-quick fingers and blistering fretwork, the slower numbers such as Like No Other highlight McGregor’s beautiful voice. The infectious melody and heavy riffs of Caught Out pick things back up, with a further favourite from Chantel’s debut album.
Unquestionably Chantel McGregor’s music has evolved within the live setting and this record certainly chronicles that evolution. After all, the stage provides an environment where the artist has the freedom to truly express themselves in a way that might not necessarily be possible in a studio. A perfect example of this would be on the Lose Control record where the Jeff Buckley inspired number Eternal Dream is merely four and a half minutes long, whilst on the live album, it is over nine minutes. This is largely thanks to a majestic guitar solo in the latter stages of the song.
Heartfelt ballad Inconsolable encapsulates differing sides of Chantel’s playing. Starting as a gentle acoustic ballad, the track builds throughout its thirteen-minute duration via an emotive and fully electrified guitar solo. Chantel’s passionate playing during the latter stages of the song puts her in a league of her own.
A fiery and somewhat thunderous recording of Your Fever features towards the end of the record. Whilst Chantel’s atmospheric composition April highlights her progressive-rock influences. This epic instrumental is worth the cost of the CD alone, and presently only features on McGregor’s latest live album.
Bury’d Alive captures the Yorkshire guitar slinger in her prime, firing on all cylinders and at the top of her game whilst simultaneously putting forward the very best of her first two albums and more.
Chantel McGregor’s forthcoming concert album Bury’d Alive will be released via Tis Rock Music on Friday 6th Sept. To order the album and details about the artist’s forthcoming live dates please visit the social links below.