Even so, the crowd doesn't seem to care.
The guys all look mostly good (although former groupie magnet Greg Lake has gotten pretty fat), and they still can play their asses off. Which is what matters most on a DVD like this. When Lake bellows out the improbable "Karn Evil 9," lyrics rhyming "gypsy queen" with "vaseline" and "guillotine," any original critical nitpicks are reduced to irrelevancy. ELP are recapturing a moment in time here, and doing a damn fine job of it too. God bless em' for it.
As the concert progresses, and the band falls into a familiar groove, all the theatrical stops are pulled out. Cannons are fired during the otherwise ponderous "Pictures At An Exhibition." Keith Emerson reprises the knive wielding, keyboard destroying theatrics of his nationally televised performance at 1974's California Jam, and Carl Palmer turns in a spellbinding solo on his revolving drum kit.
It's all enough to make one yearn nostalgically for the days of pretentious, seventies indulgent prog-rock. Sign me up, Scotty.