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Stratovarius: Polaris Live

Album Notes

Polaris Live should really have been called Polaris/Live, as it's a two-CD set that reissues the band's 2009 album Polaris with a bonus live disc from the resulting tour. So anybody who didn't buy Polaris when it was initially released should absolutely get this version. The live album offers a reasonably wide-ranging set, starting with the ten-minute title track from 1998's Destiny and going even further back, to pull songs from 1996's Episode, 1997's Visions, 1998's Destiny, and 2000's Infinite. They also perform a clutch of tracks from Polaris, of course. But here's the thing: power metal is about highly technical precision (in the service of total over the top musical silliness). There's a certain amount of audience interaction between songs, but the music never turns into free-form jamming or anything like that. So if you've heard the studio versions, you've heard the songs as they appear here, albeit with crowd noise in the background. That doesn't make Polaris Live any less fun; it just makes it kinda unnecessary, unless you're a die-hard fan. ~ Phil Freeman


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