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Alter Bridge - Live At The 02 Arena + Rarities album review

Burnished arena rock reaches its zenith

Cover art for Alter Bridge - Live At The 02 Arena + Rarities album

It’s easy to dismiss Alter Bridge’s grandstanding rock’n’roll. But while the argument rages on over who the next generation of Download headliners might be, Alter Bridge are quietly waiting for the call. In a year or two they’ll close the Sunday at Download, while we wonder what the original debate was about after all.

This latest collection sounds like a prelude to those (inevitable) shows: near histrionic adulation and pitch-perfect tunes that roar; arena rock writ large. For the less ardent admirer there’s also a disc of hard-to-find and unreleased tracks, especially the rare gem that is Solace, which makes you wonder why it has never seen the light of day before now.

With Alter Bridge, resistance is futile.

Philip Wilding is a novelist, journalist, scriptwriter, biographer and radio producer. As a young journalist he criss-crossed most of the United States with bands like Motley Crue, Kiss and Poison (think the Almost Famous movie but with more hairspray). More latterly, he’s sat down to chat with bands like the slightly more erudite Manic Street Preachers, Afghan Whigs, Rush and Marillion.