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 Post subject: Triumph - Greatest Hits
PostPosted: Sat Jan 08, 2011 12:10 pm 
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Location: Canterbury, New Brunswick, Canada
Favorite Band: Y&T, Rush, Van Halen, Kiss, Alice Cooper, Journey, April Wine, many more
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Released: 2010
Label: TML
Personnel:
Rik Emmett - guitars, lead vocals
Gil Moore - drums, lead vocals
Mike Levine - bass, backing vocals, keyboards

After much internal debate whether to put this in Fresh Meat or Cuts From the Crypt, I decided there's enough "new" on here to warrant putting it here. This release was a pleasant surprise for me, and got me listening to Triumph for the first time in ages. I've always enjoyed this band from way, way back.

This is one of the very few remasters where the artist put their money where their collective mouth is, and modernized the sound of the original recordings...sometimes too much modernization in fact. I highly recommend this collection to both the veteran Triumph fan and the curious listener alike, but it's far from perfect. Read on...


1-Allied Forces- This perennial rock anthem/call-to-arms bursts out with improved sonics...a lot less reverb on the drums makes this track sound more...I hate to say real, I'm a child of the 80s and I love that big, fat snare sound, but this sounds like a fierce, young band jamming in the studio like their lives depended on it.
2-Lay it on the Line - Similar treatment on the drums gives this classic some balls indeed.
3-Follow Your Heart - Thunder Seven in my completely biased opinion, is a perfect album to begin with, right down to Eddie Kramer's production. Still a very crisp, new sound here though. Good stuff.
4-Magic Power- One of Triumph's perennial classics sounds better than ever here. It doesn't hurt, I suppose that the originals were always pretty well recorded to begin with.
5-I Live for the Weekend- Another beefed-up classic here. But this is where my ears started to poke me internally and say, "wait a minute, did you hear that?" I could be way off, but it sounds like Gil Moore punched in some new vocals in places here. Unless they're alternate vocals from the Progressions of Power sessions. But I've listened to this song so many times, and the vocals sound way different to me. Perhaps some of the original vocals were damaged?
6-Hold On- One of Triumph's two U.S. top 40 hits sounds way better here. Just a Game was done before they got big enough to produce truly great sounding albums, so the drums and overall fullness is much improved here.
7-Just One Night- Ok, some longtime Triumph fans might poo-poo this ballad (co-written by none other than Neal Schon and Eric Martin for Eric's self-titled '85 release) but I've always loved it. But for some odd reason, Gil Moore completely redid his vocals. And I'm sorry Gil, but 24 years didn't do wonders for your voice. Some of the phrases are just so hard to listen to, out-of-tune and just...off to the point where I'm wondering if they weren't taking the piss out of the song. Seriously, how hard is it to properly pronounce the word "wondered," it's not "wondred." No really. Not a classy move guys.
8-Fight the Good Fight- Now where were we? Another classic, and another from the Allied Forces album, which was well produced anyway. Like the other tunes from the album, mainly less reverb. I don't think I could ever get tired of this song.
9-Spellbound- Like "Follow Your Heart," it's hard to improve on perfection. So this sounds as good as it ever did, just a touch better.
10-Never Surrender- Another anthem, something Triumph excelled at. Not a lot of difference here.
11-When the Lights Go Down- Always loved Rik's acoustic slide guitar intro...just a down and dirty rocker, perfect for opening a concert. Which I'm sure this song did many times.
12-Somebody's Out There- I reviewed the Sport of Kings album earlier in "Cuts..." I know the band didn't exactly enjoy recording that one, and it was pretty much the end. But I don't see why they had to switch vocal tracks on the two tracks from that album they featured here. Especially where in this case, it was their biggest hit. I don't know if this is a new Emmett vocal or not, I'm guessing it's an alternate take, he's not holding the notes as long, which as you read on will become a problem. I can't get into this mix at all. Just too used to hearing this song, um...properly?
13-Rock and Roll Machine- Oh yeah...this sounds so cool. As much as I still love the modest production values on the first two Triumph albums, they did a nifty job sprucing the sonics up...and the extended guitar solo in the middle gets me everytime.
14-Love Hurts- A nice bonus. This song was recorded in the Phil X-Edge of Excess sessions (and I still don't know why everybody slams that album, yeah Rik wasn't there but it wasn't that bad.) Originally recorded by the Everly Bros. (or was it Orbison?) it's best known to rock fans because of Nazareth's hit cover version. Strange that they would have recorded such a well-known song, it's ok but it won't replace the Naz version. Still, I'm glad it's available, having previously been released on a now-deleted UK Anthology called Living For the Weekend.

So for the most part, some welcome sonic improvements with a few notable missteps. Best of all, they included a bonus DVD with videos. I don't normally review video clips, but here goes...
1-Follow Your Heart- possibly Triumph's best-known video, a classic live performance (lip-synched to the album version of course) that made a big impression on a youngster like me, years before I ever actually got to see a live concert.
2-Lay it on the Line- man does this ever bring back memories. Lizzy and any other Canadians on here will surely remember seeing this (and several other Triumph vids) on the "Pepsi Power Hour" on MuchMusic back when they didn't suck. The mix of the classic footage with the remastered track and this just can't go wrong.
3-Spellbound- Triumph, like so many other bands great and not so great, made some gloriously cheesy videos back in the day. Although not as bad as some. This is a little narrative of a guy who experiences car trouble, to be "spellbound" by a hot blonde who seduces him, and turns him into the Thunder Seven album cover. No really.
4-Magic Power- The clip of this I always used to see was from the US Festival, but this one comes from what I believe is the Sport of Kings tour, because I can see Rick Santers on backup guitar and keyboards. By the way, they actually made a real video for this...observe.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K_jeVVSY-8c

5-When the Lights Go Down- The best videos by 80s rock bands were generally the live performances, like this one.
6-Hold On-Same "concert" as "Lay it on the Line." I wish they had actually put the full-length song on here instead of the 3 minute or so edit, but alas.
7-Just One Night- Ok, here's the good news and the bad news. The good news is they didn't use the new 2010 mix of this song. The bad news is that they did use the Sport of Kings version. Why does this matter? Astute fans will remember that they originally used a special mix for the video. Where Gil Moore pounds his fist to accent "we ever let this moment PASS" they threw in extra floor tom hits. It would have been nice if they'd preserved that mix, which to my knowledge has never been officially released. Minor detail? You bet, but you're still reading right? And yes, I realize this is basically a pretty cheesy video.
8-Somebody's Out There- This time they did use the 2010 mix, which is stupid because there are takes (mostly at the end) where Rik's singing out with this his mouth wide open and nothing's coming out. Come on guys, how did no one notice this?
9-Allied Forces- Another clip which actually has a video for it. Sure it's cheesy, but what the hell?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnKjAmKb ... re=related

The version here is from the US Festival, and for some reason they didn't even do the whole song. Ugh.
10-Never Surrender- Identical to "When the Lights Go Down."
11-Never Say Never- The last video made with the original lineup, kind of a sci-fi storyline with a hot chick. Um...that's about all I can say about it. Nice lip-synching to the drum machine Gil.
12-Child of the City- Glad to see this one on here, from the Phil X 1992 lineup. In a year dominated by (blech) grunge, I was thrilled to see a new Triumph video. Dark and grainy, with a gothic murder storyline.
13-Blinding Light Show- I love this song, one of Triumph's few "epics" and probably the most they ever came to sounding like Rush, who they were often compared to simply because they too were a Canadian rock trio. This is obviously a bootleg, but cool they included it.
14-Love Hurts- Apologies to the fan who made this "fan YouTube video," but this is kind of pointless slideshow to a pointless cover.

Then you can see their Hall of Fame inductions, which is very cool and brings everything up to date.

Unfortunately, they left a few videos off which sadly are rarely if ever seen today. Most notably, I'm surprised they didn't include some version of "Fight the Good Fight." Also, "Say Goodbye," "A World of Fantasy," and a video so rare that I can't find it on YouTube, and have only seen once, "Mind Games."

In conclusion, this is definitely worth picking up, it's just not perfect. Rock out, roll on.

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To watch AND listen to me blather on, I give you Tim's Vinyl Confessions

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 Post subject: Re: Triumph - Greatest Hits
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 12:20 am 
The Lord of Destruction
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"Tears in the rain...
Here it comes again...
I'll never know the reason why...
They didn't do 'Tears in the Rain' "...
:shrug:

A much better tune than some of the ones they included, and definitely one of my favorite Gil-sung tunes... but I guess when you've got a decent-sized selection of killer rock tunes like they do, opinions are going to differ on which ones are best.

Great review, Tim! It's been awhile since we've had anything new to talk about in the "Reviews" section. Ben is such a lazy bum these days. :roll: :wink: You're pretty much the only one still doing them at this point. I love reading them, but can't get motivated to write them anymore. I'm lazy. :lol:

This album just didn't seem to grab me when I saw it... I'm a big purist when it comes to original recordings, especially when it comes to classics like these. There's just something a bit arrogant in trying to redo songs that were so successful originally... like trying to improve the "Mona Lisa." If it worked the first time, why screw with it?

That said, I absolutely love a good covers album. I'd love to see Triumph do one. Go figure. :P

I'm sure I'll pick it up at some point, though, just for the sake of completeness. Great stuff though, bro. I enjoy reading your takes on things like this.

I gotta blast me some Triumph now. :tup


:BB Steve




PS ~ Incidentally, I was listening to "Rock N' Roll Machine" the other night... and their cover of Rocky Mountain Way came on. I had forgotten just how tasty Rik's solo on that tune was. 8)

_________________
"I told you... that we could fly... 'Cause we all have wings... but some of us don't know why..."
~ Michael Hutchens (RIP)


"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans..."
~ John Lennon (RIP)


"Don't get cute... Don't get funny now... It's later than you think..."
~ Greg Kihn


"As we celebrate mediocrity... all the boys upstairs wanna see...
How much you'll pay... for what you used to get for free..."

~ Tom Petty


Image

"I think you'd better ask yourself... before you criticize me...
Are you a victim of the System... or the Powers-That-Be?
If there was nothing to gain... would you do it for free?"

~ Sammy Hagar


"I was glad to come... I'll be sad to go... So while I'm here... I'll have me a real good time..."
~ Rod Stewart (The Faces)


"The earth can shake... The sky come down... The mountains all... fall to the ground...
But I will fear... none of these things... Shelter me, Lord... underneath your wings..."

~ Buddy Miller


"Rock hard... Ride free... All your life..."
~ Rob Halford


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 Post subject: Re: Triumph - Greatest Hits
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 12:50 am 
The Ultimate Dio Fan
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Fantastic review. HUGE Triumph fan here. Kinda feel like Steve though........don't know if I should waste the money on a collection of songs that I already have in original form. Oh who am I kidding.........I'll end up getting it anyway. :lol:

Another question for the Triumph fans here.............

Vocals: Rik or Gil??

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 Post subject: Re: Triumph - Greatest Hits
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 1:00 am 
The Lord of Destruction
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Rik's got a better overall voice... and seems to be the singer on most of my favorites.

Although I like the Gil tunes as well. They did an excellent job of giving the songs to the right singer. :tup



:BB Steve

_________________
"I told you... that we could fly... 'Cause we all have wings... but some of us don't know why..."
~ Michael Hutchens (RIP)


"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans..."
~ John Lennon (RIP)


"Don't get cute... Don't get funny now... It's later than you think..."
~ Greg Kihn


"As we celebrate mediocrity... all the boys upstairs wanna see...
How much you'll pay... for what you used to get for free..."

~ Tom Petty


Image

"I think you'd better ask yourself... before you criticize me...
Are you a victim of the System... or the Powers-That-Be?
If there was nothing to gain... would you do it for free?"

~ Sammy Hagar


"I was glad to come... I'll be sad to go... So while I'm here... I'll have me a real good time..."
~ Rod Stewart (The Faces)


"The earth can shake... The sky come down... The mountains all... fall to the ground...
But I will fear... none of these things... Shelter me, Lord... underneath your wings..."

~ Buddy Miller


"Rock hard... Ride free... All your life..."
~ Rob Halford


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 Post subject: Re: Triumph - Greatest Hits
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 8:04 am 
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Location: Canterbury, New Brunswick, Canada
Favorite Band: Y&T, Rush, Van Halen, Kiss, Alice Cooper, Journey, April Wine, many more
Facebook: Tim Durling
I think that was one of the many reasons they split originally, was over who sang what. Gil got into singing lessons big time and wanted to sing some of the higher-ranged songs. I've always enjoyed the contrast in their voices and I think it's one of their defining traits. I hope my review didn't deter anyone, it's definitely worth picking up if the price is reasonable, and it is kind of neat to have both versions to compare. Also, even though I do have some issues with the videos DVD, it's still good to have cleaned up versions of at least some of them.

If they had thrown in a second CD with this collection, these would be my picks...I'm curious to hear others.
1) Tears in the Rain (you nailed it Steve, love this one)
2) Movin' On
3) Never Say Never (mostly because it was a single)
4) I Can Survive
5) Blinding Light Show
6) Rocky Mountain Way
7) Child of the City
8 ) Say Goodbye
9) What's Another Day of Rock and Roll
10) A World of Fantasy
11) Mind Games
12) American Girls
13) (some new or unreleased track)

_________________
Saturday and Sunday nights from 6pm to 9pm (Atlantic time) playing a mix of old and new rock, at http://www.foxrocks.ca

To watch AND listen to me blather on, I give you Tim's Vinyl Confessions

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2fi5G ... iBkLtUEWFg

https://twitter.com/TimsVinyl

https://www.facebook.com/timsvinylconfessions


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 Post subject: Re: Triumph - Greatest Hits
PostPosted: Sun Feb 20, 2011 10:15 am 
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Picked this up yesterday , sounds great and the DVD was cool because it had my favoite Triumph song of alltime "The Blinding Light Show " !

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 Post subject: Re: Triumph - Greatest Hits
PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2011 11:37 pm 
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Canuck wrote:
If they had thrown in a second CD with this collection, these would be my picks...I'm curious to hear others.

Here's a few more of my Triumph favorites that haven't been mentioned yet.

It Takes Time

24 Hours A Day

Nature's Child

Tear The Roof Off

Follow Your Heart

:cheers:


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 Post subject: Re: Triumph - Greatest Hits
PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 11:41 pm 
The Lord of Destruction
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Favorite Band: Pinkmaiden Rainsabbath Zeppepriest
Old Waldorf wrote:
Here's a few more of my Triumph favorites that haven't been mentioned yet.

It Takes Time

24 Hours A Day

Nature's Child

Tear The Roof Off

Follow Your Heart

:cheers:


Follow Your Heart is on the CD, but the others are great choices! :tup

They really put together some great tunes over the years. Here's a few more that would have made my GH package...

Rock Out, Roll On
Bringing It On Home (almost a Geddy vocal on that one!)
Easy Life
Young Enough To Cry
Just A Game (awesome guitar work!)

...and as Tim mentioned...

A World Of Fantasy

That tune is so friggin' good, it should have been on there TWICE! :twisted:

:lol:


:BB Ordinary Man

_________________
"I told you... that we could fly... 'Cause we all have wings... but some of us don't know why..."
~ Michael Hutchens (RIP)


"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans..."
~ John Lennon (RIP)


"Don't get cute... Don't get funny now... It's later than you think..."
~ Greg Kihn


"As we celebrate mediocrity... all the boys upstairs wanna see...
How much you'll pay... for what you used to get for free..."

~ Tom Petty


Image

"I think you'd better ask yourself... before you criticize me...
Are you a victim of the System... or the Powers-That-Be?
If there was nothing to gain... would you do it for free?"

~ Sammy Hagar


"I was glad to come... I'll be sad to go... So while I'm here... I'll have me a real good time..."
~ Rod Stewart (The Faces)


"The earth can shake... The sky come down... The mountains all... fall to the ground...
But I will fear... none of these things... Shelter me, Lord... underneath your wings..."

~ Buddy Miller


"Rock hard... Ride free... All your life..."
~ Rob Halford


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