ALBUM REVIEW: The Dead Daisies – Live and Louder

Spitfire Music - May 19th 2017

Still only in their firth year The Dead Daisies have produced three exceptionally fine studio albums, each remarkably surpassing the quality of the previous release. The next logical step then seems to be a representation of the band in the live arena, something you really do have to see to believe and a great way to get people to get out of the house to catch one of their annual tour dates.

As live albums go this is good, this is very good indeed. If you want to hear a current day Rock band at the peak of their powers doing it ‘live and nude’ then The Dead Daisies should be near the top of that list. David Lowy’s band may now comprise only a solitary Australian these days but the players in this vintage of The Dead Daisies really do have that something extra special that surpasses merely having great chops and playing it tight. Indeed there’s something about The Dead Daisies that you just can’t put your finger on and its that which makes them one of the best Rock bands out of the traps today.

‘Live and Louder’ is a sensation – it sounds great, it drips quality and most important of all like all the best live albums do, if you close those eyes it really does put you in the room with the band and that audience.

Starting out with the crowd noise and building anticipation for ‘Long Way to Go’ we start off in blistering fashion before the gentler but oh so cool ‘Mexico’ from ‘Revolucion’ delivers the perfect one-two punch. It’s a great start and with ‘Make Some Noise’, ‘Song and a Prayer’ and the cover of Creedence’s ‘Fortunate Son’ there’s a good deal of representation from The Daisies latest release from last year , indeed 8 of those 12 tracks are included in the 15 songs here including  two covers – the aforementioned ‘Fortunate Son’ and the robust cover of The Who’s ‘Join Together’.

If there is one thing I’d take to task about the release it might just be those covers – I know having seen the band a number of times over the last few years that they are a big part of the set and indeed the fun, but with five covers in a 15 song set is rather excessive no matter how well they come out. To be blunt the truth of the matter is that alreadyt the Daisies have enogh of their own great material to not need to relay on other people’s songs.

‘Lock N Load’ comes as a timely reminder that even the 2013 debut album which at that point had Jon Stevens rather than John Corabi on vocals had some damned fine material – and it’s a shame that it’s the sole representative on what was a rather cool album. The pairing of ‘Last Time I Saw the Sun’ and ‘Join Together’ both from the latest outing though put me back firly in my place – there’s so much depth here and so much immediacy its a rare combination.

After a fine run through more newer material in ‘Join Together’ and ‘Mainline’ from ‘Make Some Noise’ and the wonderful ‘With You and I’ from Revolucion we’re into the band intros and close out with three further covers. Whilst you can’t fault the Daisies eclcetic and slightly left field choice of cover songs – The Beatles ‘ Helter Skelter’;  Grand Funk’s ‘American Band’ and Alex Harvey’s ‘Midnight Moses’  you do wonder if five is too many when their own material more than stands up. Recorded over a series of live shows there’s also a feeling that in a world where half the Daisies prospective audience grew up on tunes like these that it’s merely common sense after all.

It doesn’t even stop with ‘Midnight Moses’ though as the bonus tracks add an ‘up close and personal’ mini acoustic set comprising three more covers (again it would have been nice to have had at least one original in there just to show how well it would stack up – and I can think of plenty of great options). Still it’s hard to complain with Rod Stewart’s ‘Maggie May’ or Zeppelin’s ‘Ramble On’ though it is rather wierd to get a second cover of a song by The Who in ‘My Generation’. That choice is though is rather inspired and just might be our favourite cover here!

Recorded during the bands 2016 UK & European Tour and mixed by Anthony Focx (Beautiful Creatures) this is a live album that does all that live albums are supposed to do – it’s of course a must have for fans of the band but also a very real reminder that this is a band who embrace the classic rock sound of the 70’s and 80’s and run with it.

There have, of course, been many great live albums released over the years, but this is one that really does take you back to the glory days of Rock where live albums ruled the roost.

Tracklisting

Long Way To Go | Mexico | Make Some Noise | Song and a Prayer | Fortunate Son | We All Fall Down | Lock ‘N’ Load | Something I Said | Last Time I Saw the Sun |Join Together | With You and I | Band Intros | Mainline | Helter Skelter | American Band | Midnight Moses

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