My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Brief Background: It’s Too Late to Stop Now is a live album recorded from May to July of 1973 in L.A., Santa Monica and London. It was released in February of 1974. The album contains no overdubs or fixes, with Moondance being left off because of one bad guitar note.
What I think: I am a pretty big Van Morrison fan and love almost any studio album he has put out. This recording had always been an exception though, in fact all of his live albums always pushed me towards the studio recordings. Something changed with this listen through though. Everything just clicked really nice, especially as I got toward the end of the album. I get a feeling that I didn’t like the sound of the first couple of tracks and would always move on. I saw a live performance on Netflix one time where he was playing in a small room and I didn’t really dig it, it just stylistically seemed weird to me and Morrison seemed upset. I think I thought that this was the album version of that. Did that have something to do with my dislike? Anyway, I can now say that this is a wonderful album that I can put back into my Van rotation.
And despite what I personally felt about the album I always acknowledged the performance as great. The band is sooo tight, the crowd is hanging on every word and Morrison’s vocals are really strong. This time I didn’t quite feel the vibe on “Into the Mystic”, which is one of my favorite Morrison songs. It feels a bit rushed. I have similar feelings with “Domino” as Morrison seems to be going through the motions. Things really ramp up on side three though with his cover of the Sam Cooke song “Bring it On Home to Me” and never lets up, building to a wonderful finale with “Caravan” and “Cyprus Avenue”.
Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? Music is a funny thing, the last time I listened, I would have said to skip it. This time though it really clicked and I think it really deserves its spot here. A newly released forty-five song version of the album is now available on Spotify here: https://play.spotify.com/album/2DZ6GAyIjS3nyGsPbHe2uU
Rating (Out of 5): 4
…It’s Too Late to Stop Now… Amazon Review (Out of 5): 5
Is this my first time hearing this album? No (72/318)
Percentage of Albums that are new to me: 77%