Friday, October 1, 2010

TAB at the TAB

Just last week I received the Trey Anastastio Band's new album, TAB at the TAB.  Boredom was beginning to sneak up on me as I listened to the same few albums over and over, and over once more.  I needed something new to spark my interest; to revive my enthusiasm.

This did it. 

The album is a live recording of a TAB show from late February 2010 in Atlanta, GA.  At the beginning we hear a crowd cheering, and the band immediately dives into the opening riff for the rocker 'Money, Love & Change.'  Horns blast, the piano booms, and the sweet-slippery vocals are absolutely infectious.  I find myself humming this one much more than I had originally anticipated. 

Next up is the tender, melodious 'Words to Wanda.'  The best aspect of this slowed-down piece is the  delicate guitar solos that remind me of raindrops falling.  

The tune 'Valentine' is my favorite on the album.  It's fast-paced and has a ska feeling to it; not to mention, it's extremely catchy.  The opening guitar riff somehow reminds me of 'Piper,' which is one of my favorite Phish numbers.  Throw in some obscure lyrics, and watch the fun begin!  When I listen to this song, I feel like I begin to understand the goings-on inside of Trey's head.  

Check out a version from early February in Boston, MA:

Along with 'Alaska' and 'The Show of Life,' TAB covers three Phish songs on this album, my favorite being a rich-sounding 'Sand.'  Maybe it's the persistence of the bass line or the ongoing funky keyboard solo, but I mostly suspect the addition of a horn section.  They lend a hand to the guitar during the main riff, producing much more emphasis and articulation on the rhythm.  I really dig this version.. perhaps Phish should throw in some horns for their fall tour?

I only jest, dear readers.  But seriously, check out this cool version of the tune:

My other favorite song from the album is the hilarious, reggae-inspired 'Windora Bug.'  Tony Markellis (also known as "Fat Tony") takes charge on this one, posing the question "Is it a wind? Or a bug?" and finally coming to a resolution pleasing to everyone: "It's a Windora bug."  The joke sounds lame in writing, but in execution, I promise, it's hilarious. 

To be quite honest, I am surprised at how much I enjoy this album.  I had expected it to be good, but not something I haven't been able to get out of my head for a week.

So if you haven't tuned into this album yet, do it.  I dare you.

Adventure is out there!

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