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Pagan Streams
(bootleg CD)

BIG 020/21
(Distributed by CD Music Italy
Phone (39) 541 610556
c by BigMusic 1992)

Disc 1

  1. Out of Sight (2:43)
  2. The Girl Can't Help It (l. Richard) (2:53)
  3. Ain't That Lovin' You Baby (Otis/Hunter) (2:43)
  4. Satisfied (2:32)
  5. Who Do You Love (G. Fame) (5:14)
  6. And The Healing Has Begun 8:46)
  7. See Me Through (8:39)
  8. Moondance (10:31)
  9. Some Peace Of Mind (4:36)
  10. It All In Ther [sic] Game (5:45)
  11. Enlightenment (2:36)
  12. Whenever God Shiones [sic] His Light On Me (4:32)
  13. It Must Be You (3:19)
  14. Help Me (6:20)
  15. Northern Muse (Solid Ground) (6:07)
    Total time: (77:21)

Disc 2
  1. It Fill You Up (4:37)
  2. So Complicated (3:22)
  3. The Fayre Of County Down (2:25)
  4. Orangefield (3:05)
  5. Summertime In England 18:28)
  6. Have I Told You Lately That I Love You (3:29)
  7. Caravan (9:07)
  8. In The Garden (8:27)
  9. Send In The Clowns (4:42)
  10. Gloria/Shakin All Over (9:28)
  11. I Can't Stop Loving You (R. Charles) (3:51)
  12. Baby Please Don't Go (Williams) / Who Do You Love (F. McDanials) / What D'I Say (R. Charles) (7:38)
    Total time: (78:40)

Recorded Live in Europe 1991

Review by Russell Parkinson:
(Utrecht, Holland 1991) The sound quality of this double CD is a very good audience recording. In fact it sounds a lot like a soundboard recording. There is some distortion in a few tracks but it isn't a huge problem and is very listenable. Van actually "booted" some tracks from this boot for his Gloria CD single.

The show opens with Howlin' Wilf (AKA James Hunter) and Van. The first track is a very good Out of Sight covered by Van in his days with Them. Next up is a Little Richard number The Girl Can't Help It. It's a bit of a shouter really but van seems to be having a good time. An early and short Ain't That Loving You Baby follows and then its Give Me A Kiss (mislabeled as Satisfied) from the Street Choir album. Nothing startling here but an interesting selection. Groovin'(?) running into Who Do You Love rounds off this walm up section of the show. Van leaves and Georgie Fame finishes things off.

When Van returns things really hot up. Gone are the rushed almost shouted soul standards and Van very quickly finds his groove. He kicks of the main show with a blistering And The Healing Has Begun. Candy Dulfer on sax is mind blowing. This song blasts it way through over 8 mins of the funkiest version of this song you will ever hear. I first heard this track on the Gloria single and thought it must be one of the great show finishes ever. To find out it actually starts the show rather than finishing it is amazing. A great performance. Next up is an excellent See Me Through. There is no Soldier of Fortune here, just a straight version that is wonderful. Another one of those jazzy Moondance/Jam/Fever things is next. Enough said.

Some Peace of Mind is a bit more urgent than the studio version and Its All in The Game is the quicker version and very good. Enlightenment is a lot shorter than the album version and all the better for it. Van introduces It Must be You with a joke about Tom Jones. This wonderful soul ballad gets a fairly straight rendering which isn't as good as the album original. Help Me is fantastic. Van takes it all over the place, even at one stage pleading "you got to help me cause I'm uptight". Northern Muse closes the first disc and is also another great rendition. Slower than normal Van runs it into Auld Lang Syne and When heart is Open. Magnificent.

Disc two opens with It Fills You Up. This is pretty much the same as on A Night in San Francisco. So Complicated and Star of the County Down get the old foot tapping and Orangefield is an improvement on the album version. Summertime in England is next. At 18 minutes this is the longest summertime available on boots. Its also one of the best. Very similar to the Montreux 1990 version in structure, Van jokes with the band and the audience, explains meanings and has a great time. I find it meanders at times and loses that "summertime in england" sort of groove. Just a bit too much in it maybe. It's a minor fault though and I'm sure all Van fans would enjoy it.

Van keeps the new fans happy with Have I Told You Lately before blasting into the funkiest Caravan you will ever hear. After listening to "the classic music station play soft and low" instead of switching to the weather report Van shifts to an R'nB station and blasts off with James Browns Sex Machine. Second only to the '76 Last Waltz version in my opinion. In the Garden is next and in my opinion a little disappointing. It's a bit too rushed for my liking. A wonderful version of Send in The Clowns follows. By now Van is cracking jokes and providing explanations all over the place. Gloria/Shaking All Over is superb with Van providing a running commentary on the history of rock and roll. The "new" single I Can't Stop Loving You is squeezed in next. A cheery romp with the band obviously involved in some hi jinks as van sings "I cant stop shoving you". The show is wrapped up with a wonderful medley of Baby Please Don't Go/Who Do You Love/What'd I Say. The guitar playing is great and it's a perfect ending to a great show.

RATING: Essential. 150 minutes of Van at his best. And if you try the Music Specialists in Singapore or KTS you can probably still buy it. You won't regret it.

Review by Niall Connors:
Russell Parkinson's thorough review above of Pagan Streams is dead on-target. From my perspective, there are better sound-quality boots out there (Live In Montreux, for example), but no Van boot I have -- and I have more than a few -- so integrates solid sound with a stunning performance: Live In Montreux comes close, but at 150+ minutes, Pagan is the winer. This boot is so good, so valued, that much like the ancestral heir loom one only wears on special occasions, I listen to Pagan Streams infrequently. If I listened to it too often, I would quit my job, leave my wife and dog, and sell my soul to attend every one of the Man's concerts. I know it took me a while to track this boot down, and all I can say is: if you can find it, buy it -- it will be the best $45 you ever spend.

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