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Unleashed - 97%

thatcoltkid, May 23rd, 2007

OK... Despite the bonus track ‘Hell Bent for Leather’ and possibly the opener ‘Exciter’ and ‘Diamonds and Rust’, there aren't that many all time classics on this live album, however when you listen to it you simply cannot deny that you are listening to the greatest live album ever recorded, and possibly one of the greatest albums in general.

I highly advise you pick up a copy of this album, however I STRONGLY suggest the remastered edition for it contains 4 bonus tracks, one being the evergreen ‘Hell Bent for Leather’.

We kick things off with the only Stained Class track to make the cut, the thrash gem ‘Exciter’ which wipes the floor with the studio version, as do all the songs on this album. From then on in you are treated to pure heavy fucking metal until the very end. This album (not counting the remastered version) also features 4 tracks from Sad Wings of Destiny, 2 Sin After Sin, 2 from Killing Machine and with none from Rocka Rolla and this makes for a VERY solid tracklist.

Notable tracks include: An extended version of ‘Sinner’, the vocally complex ‘The Ripper’ (which Halford performs brilliantly), a great version of the Fleetwood Mac song ‘The Green Manalishi (with the Two-Pronged Crown)’, the classic ‘Diamonds and Rust’ which is sped up a decent amount and the epic ‘Victom of Changes’. To be honest every song on here is amazing which is why this stands as one of the greatest albums of all time.

When it’s all said and done, odds are you’ll be flicking all the way back to ‘Exciter’ to be taken on the ride of your life once again.

As for the actual quality of the album, well what can I say? It’s perfect, nothing is drowned out by the singing or the other instruments and unless they add a whole new part to the song (which happens quite a bit) the songs are performed note for note perfectly. The only real production complaint I have here is you can’t hear the crowd much at all (similar problem with Motorhead’s legendary live album No Sleep ‘til Hammersmith), but at least that means the actual music doesn’t get drowned out.

Really the whole album is virtually perfect, and even after almost 30 years it still stands up as one of the greatest albums ever... the only complaint is Beyond the Realms of Death was performed at the show, but not used on this album(even in the remaster).