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George Harrison with Eric Clapton – Moments Of Majesty (Tricone 041/042/043/044)

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Moments Of Majesty (Tricone 041/042/043/044)

Yokohama Arena, Kanagawa, Japan – December 1st, 1991

Disc 1 (63:59):  Opening, I Want To Tell You, Old Brown Show, Taxman, Give Me Love, If I Needed Someone, Something, Fish On The Sand, Love Comes To Everyone, What Is Life?, Dark Horse, Piggies, Pretending, Old Love

Disc 2 (72:26):  Badge, Wonderful Tonight, Got My Mind Set On You, Cloud Nine, Here Comes The Sun, My Sweet Lord, All Those Years Ago, Cheer Down, Devil’s Radio, Isn’t It A Pity, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Roll Over Beethoven

Disc 3 (64:02):  Opening, I Want To Tell You, Old Brown Show, Taxman, Give Me Love, If I Needed Someone, Something, Fish On The Sand, Love Comes To Everyone, What Is Life?, Dark Horse, Piggies, Pretending, Old Love

Disc 4 (71:08):  Badge, Wonderful Tonight, Got My Mind Set On You, Cloud Nine, Here Comes The Sun, My Sweet Lord, All Those Years Ago, Cheer Down, Devil’s Radio, Isn’t It A Pity, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Roll Over Beethoven

Moments Of Majesty presents two unique tape sources for the first show on George Harrison’s only tour of Japan.  December 1st 1991 is the first time he stepped onto a stage in five years (since an appearance at the 1987 Prince’s Trust) and the first full concert since 1974.  While Eric Clapton was the motivator behind the tour, and even having a short four song set in the middle, the show belongs to George Harrison and his music. 

Tricone presents two unique tapes.  The first two discs are new and have never circulated.  It is very close to the stage and captures the show in clear and powerful stereo.  The second two discs present the common tape that has been out before and contributed  ”Fish On The Sand” and “Love Comes To Everyone” to The Rock Legends Tour (Mistral Music MM 9220/9221) which came out in 1992, soon after the tour ended.  One Night In A Yokohama Arena (Holy Hawk CT 001) contained the whole show but with a cut in “While My Guitar Gently Weeps and Days Of Speed (Mid Valley MVR 137/138) was released in 2006 with two mixes of the same tape on four discs.  

Since this is the first Harrison show in many years, he assembles a “greatest hits” setlist with both his Beatle and solo songs.  Yokohama is in the unique position of being the debut live performance of many of these songs, starting with the first three songs “I Want To Tell You,” “Old Brown Shoe” and “Taxman” (two songs from Revolver and one single from 1969).  The performance is tentative and slightly sloppy, but improves with “If I Needed Someone.”  This was a staple of the Beatles’ 1966 tour setlist, and is played for the first time since.

After “Something” two rarities appear.  “Fish On The Sand” is from his latest album Cloud 9.  It would be played the following night in Osaka before being dropped.  It is a good song but one of the more obscure songs.  Other great and popular songs which appeared on the Shanghai Surprise soundtrack such as “Someplace Else” whose video received heavy play on MTV might have been a better choice.

Following is “Love Comes To Everyone.”  This is the second single, and the first track on the George Harrison LP from 1979.  It is a good live track and might have been selected for the stage because Eric Clapton plays on the studio recording.  But it’s choice over the more popular “Blow Away” is surprising.  It would be dropped after this show, never to appear again and curiously is the only song from that particular Harrison album to ever be played live.

Of course there are several albums from which nothing has been played live such as Extra Texture, Thirty Three & 1/3 and Gone Troppo.  It would have been nice to hear live interpretations of “Crackerbox Palace” and others.

Harrison’s first set ends with the first live performance of “Piggies” played with the original third verse which was cut from the recording on The Beatles.  Clapton’s four song set in the middle is short summery of the Pretending tour of Japan the previous year.  He plays the numbers in the same arrangements and is curiously received more warmly than Harrison by the Yokohama audience.

While Harrison’s first set sounded nervous, things loosen up considerably when he comes out after Clapton’s set.  “Got My Mind Set On You” was his most recent hit and thuds the stage loudly to the delight of the audience.  “Here Comes The Sun” and “My Sweet Lord” both are very tight.  Harrison dedicates “All Those Years Ago” to John Lennon.

Curiously, Clapton gives the introduction to “Cheer Down,” saing “this is a song that George did for a film called Lethal Weapon, eh?”  George then says, “Lethal Weapon II… it’s probably called something different in Japan.  Anyway the song is called ‘Cheer Down.’  Not cheer up, but cheer down.”

“Devil’s Radio,” another one from the new album as George put is, is played before the final song of the set “Isn’t It A Pity?” making it’s live debut.  “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” and a long “Roll Over Beethoven” are the two encores and close Harrison’s first concert in fifteen years.  Moments Of Majestyis a good set which might have worked better if Tricone released it as a two disc we with the first tape source.  I’m not really sure of the rationale behind having both tapes.  Nevertheless, this is a great document for an important show.   

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George Harrison with Eric Clapton - Moments Of Majesty (Tricone 041/042/043/044), 2.2 out of 5 based on 3 ratings

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