Though this topic strikes me as something to be less than worried about, it still seems worth pointing you to this article where reporter Andrew Dansby asks, “Is the live album dead?” Likely, there are far many more issues that demand attention than the question as to whether not live albums have lost their cultural significance, but I can’t help but to think about Thunderstruck by AC/DC. The live version is something else. Same goes for Hollow Years by Dream Theater.
From my perspective, I’m not sure what to think about the so-called “death of the live album.” Chances are, it’s going to happen. At least to the extent that it makes no longer makes sense for artists to release strictly live albums that don’t have some kind of multimedia experience tied in. Dansby’s take:
"The live album, once an obligatory component of a band's discography and in some cases, a defining work, doesn't seem as culturally prevalent as it did 35 years ago... live albums that sell millions of copies are likely extinct. The same could be said for most albums, but the live album was on the wane even before the bottom dropped out of the music recording business during the past decade...Part of the problem has been the industry's movement from a culture of physical albums to one of electronic singles."