Culled from his record-breaking 12-show run at Madison Square Garden, 12 Gardens Live
shows Billy Joel hasn't lost a step as one of music's more accomplished live performers. Everything you'd expect from a Billy Joel concert is here: boatloads of familiar hits, songs chock-a-block with references to New York City, and an inimitable and infectious piano style that's arguably rivaled only by Elton John. The set is peppered with long-loved favorites, like the '50s-influenced "Keeping the Faith," the strutting "Big Shot," and Joel's personal anthem, "Piano Man," complete with the crowd singing entire verses. And while only Joel knows whether his decision to personally curate his 2005 box set, My Lives
, inspired him to insert more obscure fare into the set lists for this 2006 tour, the results reveal yet another side to this pop songsmith. The addition of clavinet on "She's Right On Time" hints at Joel's classical music aspirations, while "Zanzibar" has a Steely Dan-reminiscent combination of storytelling and jazz nuance. 12 Gardens Live
is a must-have concert souvenir for Joel fans, whether they were lucky enough to be at the Garden shows or not.