Welcome to Guitar World's roundup of the top 25 live, reissued and archival albums of 2012.
The common theme of these 25 releases is easy to follow: They all feature classic or well-known songs that have been repackaged and presented anew, but with a twist, whether it be in the form of live versions, alternate versions, demos, simple remasters, etc.
At the risk of sounding like an actor who insists that the latest film he's worked on is his best yet, we have to admit that 2012 was a particularly strong year for live discs.
We got top-notch, exciting offerings from heavyweights like Led Zeppelin, Iron Maiden, AC/DC, Motörhead, Machine Head and Joe Satriani, not to mention archival live releases from The Who, The Jimi Hendrix Experience and the late Gary Moore, who covered 12 classic Hendrix tracks on Blues for Jimi: Live in London.
Music fans also were treated to several kick-ass reissues and remasters in 2012, including outstanding deluxe, 20th-anniversary editions of classic albums by Pantera and Rage Against the Machine, not to mention deluxe offerings from Pink Floyd, Paul McCartney, David Bowie and others.
While you're in a "looking back" mood, be sure to check out two other lists, namely Guitar World's Top 50 Albums of 2012 and Guitar World's Top 15 Blues and Roots Rock Albums of 2012.
Looking ahead, Jimmy Page is hinting at a solo tour in 2013, so get ready for what could be a very interesting list of live albums this time next year!