City Of Angels

By ElvisNews.com/ LexApr 27, 2015
City Of Angels

Is it a book? Is it a double CD? It is an ‘Audio Visual Presentation’, it is City of Angels, the latest outing of the Audionics label, covering Elvis’ shows At The Forum in Los Angeles. All of them (1970, 1974) in the book and the ones from 1974 on Silver disc too.

Design

The 120 page book - at least that is what the advertisement told us, I didn’t count them - has indeed one minor… no page numbering. That and the fact that two articles swapped places chronologically are the worst things I could find. 

The layout is well done, tastefully and quiet on the eye. If text is available it is presented pleasantly, with enough contrast for these old eyes. Something a lot of fans suffer from, I suppose. The only exception are the tracklistings on the back, but there are alternatives for them inside the book. 

Content

Let’s have closer look at the book first. As said in the intro it covers all shows of Elvis At The Forum in Ingleswood. The 1970 ones including some articles announcing the show(s). With quiet some photos, both (well-) known as rare (as far as you can say that with Elvis pictures). Some are in colour, others in black and white, but all together it gives a great insight of Elvis’ shows at the time.

The 1974 section is divided in chapters for the afternoon and evening shows. Here the information starts with a broader sketch of “Elvis in 1974”, well written and giving a good picture. The photos of both shows are again both b/w and colour, but colour wins hands down.

After the Forum shows there is some room for the San Bernardino shows, both before and after the Forum shows (May 10 and 13). Furthermore there are chapters dedicated to the meeting with Led Zeppelin (part of..) and David S. - stepbrother - view on it. The last part is filled with ‘secrets’... memorabilia in the form of schedules, band-orders and so on.

The CDs bring both afternoon and evening shows from 1974. I often said “I prefer a good audience recording above a poor soundboard”, well, here we have both!

The afternoon show is an audience recording, not among the best audience recordings available, but still very listenable. Once you are used to the sound it is actually pretty good. Of course Elvis wasn’t Elvis anymore but as we know 1974 (the first half) was not that bad. This afternoon show is more than enjoyable and the rare inclusion of You Can Have Her makes it somewhat special.

The evening show was available on FTD before, both with the book Live in L.A. and as stand-alone release. Obviously the source is different and this release wins hands down. It is not as “muffled” as the FTD-outing and sounds way clearer. Still for a soundboard, it is not great and the drops in Funny How Time Slips Away are pretty annoying. 

Conclusion

Obviously this is a labour of love. An above average audience and sub par soundboard recording brought in a beautiful book. It should be in every fan’s collection for sure.

Tracklisting

CD1 - 11.05.1974 2:30 PM: 
01. Introduction: Also Sprach Zarathustra - 02. C. C. Rider - 03. I Got A Woman / Amen - 04. Love Me - 05. Tryin' To Get To You - 06. All Shook Up - 07. (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel - 08. Love Me Tender - 09. You Can Have Her - 10. Steamroller Blues - 11. Hound Dog - 12. Fever - 13. Polk Salad Annie - 14. Why Me Lord - 15. Suspicious Minds - 16. Introductions of singers, musicians, orchestra - 17. I Can't Stop Loving You - 18. Help Me - 19. An American Trilogy - 20. Let Me Be There (with reprise) - 21. Funny How Time Slips Away - 22. Big Boss Man - 23. Can't Help Falling In Love - 24. Closing Vamp / Announcements
CD2 - 11.05.1974 8:30 PM: 
01. Introduction: Also Sprach Zarathustra - 02. C. C. Rider - 03. I Got A Woman / Amen - 04. Love Me (with reprise) - 05. Trying To Get To You - 06. All Shook Up - 07. (Let Me Be Your) Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel - 08. Love Me Tender - 09. Steamroller Blues - 10. Hound Dog - 11. Fever - 12. Polk Salad Annie - 13. Why Me Lord - 14. Suspicious Minds - 15. Introductions of singers, musicians, orchestra - 16. I Can't Stop Loving You - 17. Help Me - 18. An American Trilogy - 19. Let Me Be There (with reprise) - 20. Funny How Time Slips Away - 21. Big Boss Man - 22. Can‘t Help Falling In Love - 23. Closing Vamp / Announcements 
Tracks 21-23 were recorded on May 10th, 1974 in Swing auditorium, San Bernardino, CA, 8:30 PM 
Bonus: 23. Robert Plant talks about meeting Elvis - 24. Big Boss Man - 25. Can‘t Help Falling In Love - 26. Closing Vamp / Announcements 
Tracks 24-26 were recorded from audience on May 11th, 1974 E/S and they are used for historical reason. 

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Reactions

mikael69 (profilecontact) wrote on May 27, 2015report abuse
He is no longer here so anything that is different may be read as new & valuable. Questions are how really improved is it and what kind of hifi system does one needs to enjoy it then how often is one to play it to be worth the investment. Frankly if the recording has a great pix, comes with a special story (opening night, fight night etc.) I m pre-conditioned to believe that the sound can make a difference ;-) though for instance I gave back the first Gravel Road I bought cause there was absolutely no sounding added value (far from it) to it vs the initial boot. We could have the same discussion re. books - why buying 50 € a book about the gold lame book when one already has so many ... At the end the only way to be happy is to listen to neutral opinion (huge thanx to Ciscoking) and admit that we are nuts too
marco31768 (profilecontact) wrote on May 7, 2015report abuse
A GREAT release.
mature_elvis_fan75 (profilecontact) wrote on May 6, 2015report abuse
Nice release,and nice that they corrected the mess ftd made with the soundboard,oh yes the mess ftd made then repeated.
Elzo (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 30, 2015report abuse
Gave the book a closer look and at second thought I'm glad I've purchased it. Enough new pictures and looks good. Didn't listen to the cd's yet but I'll do soon. Nice package!
Elzo (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 29, 2015report abuse
I assume there are more pictures from reel to reel tapes than actual tapes. And yes - I have the product and am not that impressed with it...... guess I jjust don't like the size of these kind of books. It is laid-out like a big book which means I think there is to much on to small pages.
Johnny2523 (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 28, 2015report abuse
If you actually bought the product (which i have) you can see they pictured the reel-to-reel tape in the book..
and the 70$ figure is ridiculous boxcar.. did you even check the right places for it? I've seen this one go for between 45 to 55 $..
Elzo (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 28, 2015report abuse
Well Cisco, they can say and write anything, can't they?
Ciscoking (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 28, 2015report abuse
I have heard they had the reel-to-reel tape. The same source but not copied to whatever.
Boxcar (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 28, 2015report abuse
I had the opportunity to compare the soundboard with the older bootleg and FTD. "Obviously the source is different" .. why is this obvious Lex? Because the ad says so? The recording starts the same second the older releases did and it ends exactly the same. The new CD is even a few seconds shorter due to pitch-altering (I don't say 'correction'). The 'new' sound can easily be reached. Put the old release in your hifi or PC, put the high frequences up so it doesn't sound muffled again. The hiss that occured through that step was eliminated through hiss-reduction. That's all. In my opinion that led to a slightly 'synthetic voice" of Elvis. An absolute no-go. We have to go away from the idea that every Bootlegger has a differend source of the tapes. The 'overwhelming' sound-enhencements based on totally different sources do no longer exist! Or can somebody proof me wrong? Sure, some re-releases are more easy on the ear but there's nothing that you couldn't do by yourself. Im my opinion even the established labels just 'change the soundscape' of older CDs. And there is not too much you can do if you have a mono-CD as a source. In my opinion we are buying the same stuff again and again. We pay high price for some added pictures, comprehensive ad-texts and an in most cases altered but not better sound. This one here hurts my ear more than the muffled original which didn't hurt my ear at all. And some dealers charge 50-70 Euro/Dollar for a product like that. Ridiculous. So, if you have another 70 Euro left for some liner notes and an altered old CD .. drop me a p.m. and I'll give you my account number. To make a long story short: Even the Bootlegger's barrel is as empty as can be and they have to find new ways to milk the fans without investing. Interestingly the number of 'limited copies' in many cases dropped from 500 to 300 during the last months. A hint that I'm not too wrong with my opinion. More and more fans can't see the sense behind these re-packed classics of the past that floot the market,
Natha (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 28, 2015report abuse
Thanks for your very informative review.
Ciscoking (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 27, 2015report abuse
Nice and informative review....I second it....thanks.

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