Asia – Fantasia (Wetton, Howe, Downes & Palmer… Reunion Original Band: Live in Tokyo 2007)

 

ONLY TIME WOULD TELL…

The music of Asia continues to endure. 25 years on, the iconic blending of hook-laden songs, the golden voice of John Wetton and the spectacular musicianship of Geoff Downes, Carl Palmer and Steve Howe remains as it was on their debut album – absolute perfection. To coin a phrase, they had captured lightning in a bottle and kept that cork firmly in place!

By the end of the day, their eponymous debut album had spent nine weeks on the top of the Billboard charts. Six of the album’s nine songs had also made their mark, scaling the heights of the Pop Singles or Mainstream Rock charts. More than seven million copies were shipped. making the album the best-selling debut band recording to date. No small feat, to be sure.

If the truth be told, one knock against the original band was perhaps their lack of touring during the band’s heyday. Case in point: with yet another Top 10 single in “Don’t Cry”, the band toured less in the following year, clocking in a mere 20-odd live shows in America before calling it a day in September of 1983. A goldmine of untapped potential would remain buried for the next 23 years.

In the interim, their impact on the music industry would be felt in their influence of those who followed in their footsteps. Def Leppard, Bon Jovi and others grabbed the torch of “arena rock” and carried it forward into the late 1980S, giving credence to Asia’s trailblazing of the genre.

Fans awaited their return with bated breath. But as the saying goes, patience is a virtue. All the while, The band continued to stew in the collective conscience of pop culture. “Heat of the Moment” would be featured regularly. most notably in the American hit TV series “South Park”, and the 2005 Hollywood blockbuster,

“The 40 Year-Old Virgin”. Clearly, Asia was gone (for the moment) but not forgotten. In January of 2006 (in a London hotel and out of the glare of the media spotlight), the four men quietly reconvened for the first time in nearly a quarter of a century.

Expectations were purposely muted as the group mulled over the potential that would lay in the year ahead – the coming 25th anniversary of the release of the record shattering debut album. By the end of the day all were in agreement. It was game on.

As word of the pending reunion began to spread like wildfire through the Internet, it was soon necessary for there to be official confirmation of the reunion. By the time the quartet reconvened in August for rehearsals, a full US tour was in place.

The entire debut album would be performed alongside a selection of special acoustic numbers and a new concept for the band – a musical snapshot from each member’s pre-Asia heritage. Considered heresy during their first go-round in the early 1980s, the time was now right to place the Asia classics side-by-side with the best that Yes, ELP, King Crimson and Buggles had to offer.

The result? A string of massively successful live shows throughout the United States, Great Britain, Japan and South America. Standing ovations and sold-out venues quickly became the norm. Cheers, smiles and tears of joy greeted the band in each and every city. They were welcomed as conquering héroes to a fan base who at times had given up hope of ever seeing their musical idols together again.

As a show of respect and sincere thanks to their legions of hard-core fans, the band remained after the gigs on most nights (as schedules permitted) to sign autographs for each and every person in attendance.

The feelings were reciprocated, leaving fans in attendance over the moon. Not only had they just seen the unthinkable, an Asia reunion in the 21st Century, but they had been given a rare privilege… a chance to say thank-you in person to their musical heroes. It didn’t get any better than that.

In March of 2007, the reunion tour finally reached the band’s spiritual homeland with a tour of Japan. When the initial run of six shows quickly sold out, an extra date had to be added to meet the overwhelming demand. For the first time ever, the four original members of Asia would take to the stage in the Far East.

So what better location to shoot their first-ever live concert video? All of the pieces of the puzzle fell into place, resulting in another stellar performance that has now been chronicled.for the ages.
Geoff Downes, Steve Howe, Carl Palmer & John Wetton – 
 The Four Original Members of Asia.


Tracklist:

1. Time Again (5:14)
2. Wildest Dream (5:36)
3. One Step Closer (4:20)
4. Roundabout (8:41)
5. Without You (5:44)
6. Cutting It Fine (6:24)
7. Intersection Blues (3:39)
8. Fanfare For Common Man (7:34)
9. The Smile Has Left Your Eyes (3:39)
10. Don’t Cry (4:29)
11. The Court Of Crimson King (5:01)
12. Here Comes The Feeling (5:39)
13. Video Killed The Radio Star (4:39)
14. The Heat Goes On ? Drum Solo (9:14)
15. Only Time Will Tell (5:00)
16. Sole Survivor (6:52)
17. Ride Easy (5:27)
18. Heat Of The Moment (8:25)

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Audio mp3 320@kbps.

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