My Morning Jacket
Fewer and fewer bands seem to put out a decent live album these days, so it's a refreshing change to see My Morning Jacket releasing a live CD (and upcoming DVD) "Okonokos". Inspired by Neil Young's Marshall-speakers-and-Jawas efforts with Rust Never Sleeps, the band put on two shows at the Fillmore in San Francisco, inviting the crowd to come in fancy dress. Fancy lighting and a load of trees on stage set the scene and the band proceeded to rip through two nights of extended jams, cut through with Jim James amazing voice.
The album is certainly not just the Jim James show, turning in relatively few of the spine-tingling moments found at his solo shows, or on the Acoustic Cistouca EP. Instead it's very much a full band affair, swapping the delicate drum machine-style of It Beats 4 U for a beefed up sound that turns the song in the opposite direction and re-invents it as a heavy love song.
Crowd favourite One Big Holiday is a highlight, but there is certainly no shortage - The Way That He Sings, Golden, Anytime - all fantastic. This is a band that has no problem producing new material, and they showcase a broad range here, including some less well known tracks like O Is The One That Is Real. The band specialise in re-working and expanding old favourites and X-Mas Curtain and the finale of Magheeta are supurb.
If you're looking to convert a potential fan then this probably isn't the right album to use. Start them off with Z. If you're a fan already then you won't need much convincing, and you won't be dissapointed.
We're off to see them at the Astoria tomorrow. Review on Monday.