Laura Nyro's untimely death five years ago at age 49 still pains her fans. This two-disc live set—taken from successive 1993/1994 Christmas Eve concerts at New York's Bottom Line nightclub, and

Laura Nyro's untimely death five years ago at age 49 still pains her fans. This two-disc live set—taken from successive 1993/1994 Christmas Eve concerts at New York's Bottom Line nightclub, and titled after a line from signature song "Emmie" —acts as a much-needed balm. Playing piano and accompanied by a female vocal group, Nyro's live shows were very reminiscent of her landmark 1971 album, Gonna Take a Miracle, featuring LaBelle. Live encompasses Nyro's entire career, from her '60s girl-group roots (a cover of the Crystals' "Oh Yeah, Maybe Baby") to her final recordings (the title track to her posthumous 2001 disc, Angel in the Dark). Her incomparable musical resourcefulness is present throughout, especially on the completely reworked "Save the Country." While one hesitates to use such words as "haunting" and "angelic," that's how Nyro would be described here were she alive. Thanks to this set, she still is, eternally.—JB