Vinyl love: Spiritualized “Royal Albert Hall October 10 1997”

(Vinyl Love is a series of posts that quite simply lists, describes, and displays the pieces in my growing vinyl collection. You can bet that each record was given a spin during the drafting of each corresponding post.)

Artist: Spiritualized
Album Title: Royal Albert Hall October 10 1997
Year released: 1998
Year reissued: 2014
Details: 2 x 180 gram

The skinny: We interrupt this backwards journey through Spiritualized’s exceptional studio album output to bring you a live album. But not just any live album. “Royal Albert Hall October 10 1997” is perhaps one of my favourite ever live albums, being one of only a small handful on my record shelves*. As its title suggests, Jason Pierce brought his band, along with a horn section, a string quartet, and a gospel choir, to Royal Albert Hall one night in October in 1997 and blew the doors off the place. I know this is true, not just because of the recording that blows my mind every time I hear it, but also from the stories recounted by my friend Tim**, who was lucky enough to be in attendance that night in London. The double album contains blissed out and freak out jams of most of the tunes off their latest album at the time***, plus samplings off their first two records, and as a bonus, one song from Pierce’s pre-Spiritualized lifetime, Spaceman 3. Though this pressing is another bare bones reissue by Plain Recordings, it’s a limited edition release on two lovely sounding 180-gram discs and the artwork is (almost)**** like I remember from the original copy I had on CD.

Standout track: “I think I’m in love (live)”

*Indeed, it’s only one of two that I purchased specifically for the live record, the others being bonus discs or parts of box sets.

**Happy birthday Tim!

***Yes, yes, “Ladies and gentlemen, we are floating in space“.

****As you can see in the cover photo above, the circle at the end of the band name on the cover, that usually includes a registered trademark notation, but here, is supposed to surround the concert venue, has somewhat missed the mark.

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