TOTO – 35th Anniversary Tour; Live In Poland (2014)
“TOTO – 35th Anniversary Tour ; Live In Poland” sees this legendary band celebrating their 35th Anniversary at the Atlas Arena in Lodz, Poland during their 2013 World Tour.
Judging the quality performances and the vibrant atmosphere, it was one heck of a party.
The concert release (available on 2CD, DVD, Blu-ray and deluxe edition) was filmed on June 25, 2013, and features two hours of all-time Toto hits. Band members on the show included Steve Lukather, David Paich, Steve Porcaro and Joseph Williams, in short, Toto at their very best.
“Live In Poland” serves not only as a consummate standalone rock and roll entertainment experience, but as a reminder of why Toto mattered back in the ‘70s and ‘80s – and remains just as relevant today.
Following a superb musical intro, Toto christens the stage with a medley of “On the Run,” “Child’s Anthem,” and “Goodbye Elenore.” This energetic opening mash-up acclimates you for the great performances to come.
Written in 1989 but shelved until Toto XX nine years later, “Goin’ Home” gives Williams his first major vocal workout. The pairing of “Hydra” (sung by Paich) and “St. George and the Dragon” (sung by Williams) unravels the story of a hero and mythical monster – and showcases the band members’ virtuosic chops.
Lukather turns in a soulful – if somewhat shaky, lead vocal on “I’ll Be Over You,” but his pipes improve over time, and he rises to the occasion for “Better World”. His guitar playing is formidable, even when he busts out an acoustic as on the smoky “99.”
Williams takes the blues rocker “It’s a Feeling” to another level with his impressive range, and also excels on the progressive, Indian-flavored “Falling in Between” (from the band’s most recent studio album) and the funky “White Sister.”
Of course the classics shine as well; “Rosanna” features both Lukather and Williams on vocals, with Paich contributing background harmony while tickling the ivories. The primal rhythms of “Africa” sees Nathan East steering the tune into audience participation territory, thumping his bass and using his own remarkable voice to engage the crowd with his sung.
“Pamela” and “Stop Loving You” likewise become protracted jams (wherein Phillips unleashes a fluid, percussive mini-solo), and Williams somehow manages to get the thousands in attendance to echo his refrains in uplifting call-and-response manner.
The grand finale arrives with “Hold the Line,” playfully sparring with Williams on the stratospheric lead vocal, and an extremely melodic version of “Home Of The Brave.”
The sound / mix of “TOTO – 35th Anniversary Tour ; Live In Poland” is sublime.
What’s great about this concert is the set list. You have some of the songs that aren’t played live anymore, such as “Going Home”, “St. George & The Dragon”, “It’s A Feeling”, “How Many Times” & “Stop Loving You”.
Joseph Williams is really back on form (and I look forward to hearing him on the new Toto album, due 2015). It’s also great to hear Steve Porcaro with his sonic wizardry on the keys. Steve Lukather, David Paich & Simon Phillips are as amazing as ever, if anything they get better and better with the passing years.
I am a big Toto fan, and got all their live records. Quite simply this is the very best.
It’s Toto, one of the greatest bands of all time. Period.
01 – Intro
02 – Medley: On The Run / Child’s Anthem / Goodbye Elenore
03 – Goin’ Home
04 – Hydra
05 – St George And The Dragon
06 – I’ll Be Over You
07 – It’s A Feeling
08 – Rosanna
09 – Wings Of Time
10 – Falling In Between
11 – I Won’t Hold You Back
12 – Pamela
01 – 99
02 – The Muse
03 – White Sister
04 – Better World
05 – Africa
06 – How Many Times
07 – Stop Loving You
08 – Hold The Line
09 – Home Of The Brave
Steve Lukather – guitar, vocals
David Paich – keyboards
Steve Porcaro – synths
Joseph Williams – vocals
Simon Phillips – drums
Nathan East – bass
Amy Key, Mabvuto Carpenter – backing vocals
BUY IT !