German melodic rockers Fair Warning have been around for over 20 years. It started back in 1991, and they have been treating us with solid melodic rock albums, with last year's Aura being the most recent one in line. Now a year later the band decided it was time to add a live concert to their impressive catalogue. What better place to do so than Japan as Fair Warning is more popular in the Land of the Rising Sun than the rest of the world? With this show, they almost put their illustrious, recently retired, compatriots The Scorpions in the shade. Talking Ain't Enough is the name of the 3 disc package and captures the band on two occasions in Tokyo. The first is a concert in October 2009 in Loud Park, the other in Wel City in January 2010. Both gigs are also available on a double DVD set.
Let me tell you up front, if you want to know how quality melodic rock is played live you better check this out ASAP. I never thought I would say this, but letting Talking Ainít Enough sometimes reminds me of UFO's classic Strangers in the Night. Although no album will ever reach the heights of this monumental piece of live rock, Talking Ainít Enough makes a great attempt. The band is really in grand form, all members shine like a light in the dark, and the addition of a second guitarist plus a keyboard player works out fantastic. The spirit and enthusiasm simply bursts from the speakers.
The conclusion of this review is based mainly on the gig in Wel City rather than the one in Loud Park. The latter is not bad, but the former has a better sound to it: deeper, heavier, and with a better mix. In addition, the track listing is more varied which comes as no surprise since it consists of 22 tracks whereas the other one is limited to 13. Nevertheless, the Loud Park gig is still a great bonus disc.
Overall, the three discs are a great journey through time since they capture both the old and the new stuff. Mentioning individual highlights is useless since the whole show is the highlight, but I was particularly pleased with the special version of Still I Believe (check that solo), the fantastic threesome of ballads in the middle consisting of Falling/Long Gone/Hey Girl and guitarist Helge Engelke's personal impression of Led Zeppelinís Kashmir.
People who still suffer from depression over the well-deserved retirement of Scorpions should pay attention here. With Talking Ainít Enough they can see light at the end of the tunnel. The disc proves that, not only can Fair Warning keep the German rock hopes alive in Japan, but can walk in the footsteps of Klaus Meine and company for years to come.
The disc proves that, not only can Fair Warning keep the German rock hopes alive in Japan, but can walk in the footsteps of Klaus Meine and company for years to come.
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