OK, so I can’t even take credit for this recording whatsoever. But now if I search for it on the internet, I can’t find it anywhere at all, so I thought I’d go ahead and post it. I did give it the standard remaster treatment, but that’s about it.
Goblin live at Donaufest in Krems, Austria, 23 April 2009.
This is a significant recording because it’s one of the last shows performed by the band where all of the original members were still in the band. I’m not 100% up on my Goblin history, but if I remember correctly, in the years prior to this recording, they had broken up and reunited several times, but the reunions would never last too long, and they would end up disbanding every time.
And even that wouldn’t be that big of a deal, because there are plenty of bootlegs and tv performances and other live recordings of the band, but this one sounds best by far. The drum sound is cracking, and it has a superior distorted Rickenbacker bass sound, and the keyboard/organ sounds are amazing, and the mix is 100% spot on.
The unfortunate part is that this is obviously not their entire performance of that night. It’s only 26 minutes, and that includes the long-ish intro and a solid minute and a half of outro applause. I remember seeing some complete tracklist of this show at one point, and it was about an hour and a half. Only these four songs in this recording were ever posted to the internet.
The original recording was done by the ORF, the national public radio network in Austria. I sincerely hope that they did actually record the entire show and that the master recording survives somewhere in a basement of their studios. It would be a landmark live recording of the legendary Italian prog rock band.
Especially considering that shortly after this recording, they broke up yet again. And again I’m a bit foggy on this, but I think now there are actually two Goblins where half of the members play in one band and the other half in the other. One generally goes by the name Claudio Simonetti’s Goblin, and they have been very busy touring quite a lot, even doing their first US tour, which I caught in Hollywood. Further confusing matters, they were also called New Goblin for a while, as you’ll see on the cover of their live album recorded in Rome in 2011. The other band I think still goes by the name Goblin, and plays all the same songs, but has different members in the band.
Another reason why this recording would be the ultimate live Goblin recording if the entire thing were released, is because the replacement members in Claudio Simonetti’s Goblin don’t measure up to the original members. The original Goblin, as heard in this recording, are a prog rock fusion band. The replacement members in the new Claudio Simonetti’s Goblin (the drummer and bassist) obviously have their roots in heavy metal, which doesn’t fit the music at all. They sound like a heavy metal cover band playing Goblin songs, and to my ears it doesn’t work. They’ve listened to too much (and are seemingly trying to emulate) Pantera and not enough Weather Report.
And that live in Rome album is a glaring example of how misplaced they sound, as they come across as a heavy metal jam band, and it’s rather embarrassing.
Which is why I’m so big on this Donaufest recording. I’m sure there was all sorts of tension and turmoil behind the scenes, but on tape it sounds effortless and magical.
(1:37) Deep Red