The Greensboro Concert, Triangle Productions (TP03002)

By: Nigel Patterson - July 24, 2003

The Greensboro Concert is one of the hottest unofficial releases ever! A great live concert, great packaging, great sound.

In brief: sensational release of Elvis' evening show in Greensboro, North Carolina on 14 April 1972 with 23 tracks, attractive artwork, 8 page booklet and a running time of 61' 45".

Audio Quality: allegedly taken from the Elvis On Tour master tapes and it shows. Fantastic sound quality (pump up the volume) apparently digitally re-mastered at the Graceland Studio.

Packaging: the packaging is first rate with eye catching artwork designed by Management III.

The Booklet: a very attractive 8 page booklet, nicely designed with some great color photos from Greensboro and San Bernardino and short liner notes written by "General Flunky".

The Music: Question: would you like to hear crystal clear vocals, a highly appreciative audience and near perfect audio balance between Elvis and his backing musicians? If your answer is yes, then the new release from Triangle Productions, The Greensboro Concert, is a must listen to experience.

Quite simply, it is one of the best Elvis live concert releases in years! From the opening words of See See Rider, it is apparent Elvis is in good form. A solid version of the bayou classic, Proud Mary really gets the large and appreciative crowd of 16,300 in the groove before Elvis goes into You Gave Me A Mountain, turning the powerful ballad into a crescendo of heartache.

Elvis obviously identifies with the (then) contemporary feel of Three Dog Night's 'Never Been To Spain' as his musical empathy oozes out of each word of the song. I've always thought it a great pity Elvis didn't record more Three Dog Night's hits. Mama Told Me Not To Come and One (Is the Loneliest Number) would have made great Elvis recordings.

Polk Salad Annie hits you right in the face with Elvis' high energy vocals and very tight musicianship from the band. On Hound Dog James Burton kicks things off with some sublime, bluesy guitar as Elvis delivers one of his best 'live' interpretations of this overdone classic.

A top notch rendition of the Simon & Garfunkel monster hit, Bridge Over Troubled Water, has your thoughts drifting off with the soothing images colorfully painted by its evocative lyrics. Suspicious Minds is nicely sung, a fast paced crowd pleaser with The King urging his love to realise what she's done to him! You can virtually see Elvis' body gyrating, flailing about during the lyric breaks, and the song almost gets a reprise.

Something unusual happens to Elvis during Love Me Tender - it turns his suit blue! Elvis always uses this song to recover physically from the exertions of his up-tempo numbers and physically interact with the audience, and you can tell he is well satisfying the needs of women in the front rows of the coliseum. Enough said!

Elvis really does justice to the beautiful Ray Price hit (penned by Kris Kristofferson), For The Good Times. You can instantly tell how much he enjoys performing this song.

The pace changes, and with An American Trilogy, Elvis touches a heartfelt chord with his southern audience. The King effortlessly demonstrates his incredible vocal control over each and every lyric. The way he raises and lowers his voice at critical moments is amazing to listen to. This is indeed a superlative performance and was rightly used in the movie.

It was on this tour that Elvis introduced a new single, Burning Love. It is said Elvis was never comfortable with the awkwardly phrased and paced #1 hit song, and you can sense this as he belts out the tune. While it was the San Antonio version that made it to the movie ' Elvis On Tour' this is also a fascinating version for being such an early live attempt.

The three songs used from this concert for Elvis On Tour were 'Bridge Over Troubled Water', 'Funny How Time Slips Away' and 'An American Trilogy'.

On Release Me, Elvis hits high notes that would make Gerry Dorsey proud, while Funny How Time Slips Way gets The King "sweating".

A nicely paced (not too fast), Can't Help Falling In Love, fittingly closes what has been a superb concert experience.

Rounding out the recording is a full 1 minute plus 'closing vamp' with those immortal words, "Elvis has left the building, thank you and good night".

Despite the high production qualities of the audio re-mastering and color booklet, the disc itself is apparently (and very surprisingly) a CDR!

In fact there has been some criticism of the release for this reason. In my opinion, that criticism is totally unwarranted. The concert was originally released on the Vicky label as Sweet Carolina. However, the audio mastering on the Triangle Productions release makes it a superior listening pleasure.

Tracklisting: 2001 A Space Odysee - See See Rider - Proud Mary - Never Been To Spain - You Gave Me A Mountain - Until It's Time For You To Go - Polk Salad Annie - Love Me - All Shook Up - Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel - Hound Dog - Heartbreak Hotel - A Big Hunk O' Love - Bridge Over Troubled Water - Suspicious Minds - Love Me Tender - Band introductions - For The Good Times - An American Trilogy - Burning Love - Release Me - Funny How Time Slips Away - Can't Help Falling In Love / Closing Vamp

Verdict: The Greensboro Concert is an essential inclusion in every Elvis fan's CD library. This rock & roll concert is one of The King's best , with superior audio balance between singer, band and audience! (And I still can't believe it's a CDR)

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