Black Sabbath – Captured Alive Definitive Edition (No Label)

Black Sabbath - Captured Alive DefinitiveCaptured Alive Definitive Edition (No Label)

Worcester Centrum Centre, Worcester, MA – November 4, 1983

(76:11) DJ Intro, Supertzar, Children Of The Grave, Hot Line, War Pigs, Stonehenge / Iron Man, The Dark / Zero The Hero, Heaven And Hell, Guitar Solo, Digital Bitch, Black Sabbath, Smoke On The Water, Paranoid 

The Westwood One Radio Network would record Black Sabbath on their stop in Boston during the Born Again tour in late 1983. The resulting broadcast has been the subject of many bootleg releases starting back in the days of vinyl as The Shadows Of Flame (Rockline Recs 003), and with the advent of the compact disc on such titles as Live In USA (KARMA 0011) and its Australian clone Iron Man Vol. 3 (Banana BAN-053-C) both of which feature just a portion of the original broadcast. A longer version of the tape appeared on such titles as Gillan The Hero (Nightlife N 014), Captured Alive (Power Gate 099), and now this title from the folks at No Label.

A few years back a Pre FM version of the concert started to circulate, it is the source for this release but since the only other version I have is the KARMA boot that is what I can compare. Firstly the sound on this new, Definitive Edition is superb and could easily pass as an official release, the recording has perfect balance of vocals and instrumentation with a nice mix of audience mixed in. Curiously when the Deluxe Edition of Born Again was released the bonus material was an inferior recording of the Reading Festival gig, while an interesting listen its sonic quality is nowhere near this tape. Unfortunately it is not the complete concert as it is missing Rock N Roll Doctor and Disturbing The Priest both of which have never circulated from the board.

The performance on this CD is top notch, the band storm through their past catalog with War Pigs and Iron Man, a bit of Heaven and Hell from the Dio era as well as several songs from the superb Born Again record, if you are looking for a more detailed review the one I did for the Chicago 1983 – The Legendary Master (No Label) will give you the play by play as the performances are just days apart. What you get here, although not complete is by far the best sounding document from this tour, one that deserves many repeated listenings, turn this up loud it will shake the foundations. For those who want more there was also a title from this tour released about the same time called Eurolines World Tour 1983-1984 (No Label) that features two soundboard fragments from the European leg of the tour, 12 tracks from Paris, France on September 30, 1983 and 3 songs from Boblingen, Germany on September 26, 1983. Both are soundboard recordings, the mix of music is great but there is no audience mixed in so it lacks atmosphere and both have that dry, flat sound to them.

The packaging is typical for the No Label company, professional looking inserts that for this release are quite drab, there is a picture on the inside featuring the Westwood One broadcast disc and cue sheets imposed over a mock up of the rear of the Born Again record. While not being able to compare to the Power Gate release I am unable to say how they compare but speaking for this title, it is called definitive for a reason.

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  1. I’m a big Sabbath fan. Love the Gillan years and maybe this is #1 Sabbath boot of my collection (ok, BOSTON ’92 is paired with this one).

    My first title for the stated show was BORN IN HELL, by the italian ACS (American Concert Series) label. That one was great but was easily surpassed by Power Gates’ CAPTURED ALIVE (CA). CA is sourced from an australian vinyl LP called BIKING SKULLS and contains the DJ commnts before the actual music starts (he introduces Gillan as Gillian). When No Label released this title I grabbed it as well hoping for an even better audio. To my ears, it is not. The difference in the sound is really minimum but Power Gates’ is a hair crispier.

    The performance is absolutely mind blowing. Gillan does the best versions’ one can expect for Children of the Grave, Black Sabbath (superb!!), War Pigs (superb!!) & Paranoid. Heaven in Hell is really different. Not particularly better than Dio’s but awesomely different. A MUST for every Sabbath fan.


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