Powertrane

Ann Arbor Revival Meeting

  • AllMusic Rating
    8
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

The title of this blazing live document comes from a between-song quip from guest artist Deniz Tek, and it's certainly fitting -- the show captured here brings together some truly legendary figures from the Michigan college town that became a home to the likes of the Stooges and the MC5 back in the day. In the 1960s, Scott Morgan was the lead singer and guitarist with Detroit's finest blue-eyed R&B act, the Rationals, and later he teamed with Fred "Sonic" Smith to form the brilliant (and woefully underappreciated) Sonic's Rendezvous Band. While Morgan has a remarkable résumé, he's also still making great high-energy rock & roll in the new millennium with his band Powertrane, and for a handful of special shows at Ann Arbor's Blind Pig, they were joined by Tek, an Ann Arbor émigré and close friend of Morgan's who formed one of Australia's most iconic rock outfits, Radio Birdman. Tek, Morgan, and Powertrane lead guitarist Robert Gillespie (who has played with Rob Tyner and Mitch Ryder) make for a truly devastating guitar combination here, and things only get hotter when Ron Asheton shows up for a show-closing mini-set of Stooges classics. But as good as "TV Eye," "No Fun," and "1969" sound in this context, the songs that really astound are Morgan's stellar originals (especially "R.I.P. R&R," "Runaway Slaves," and "Dangerous") and some lesser-known tunes from Tek's solo career, in particular "Blood from a Stone" and a simply blistering run through "Outside"." Cult Heroes belter Hiawatha Bailey sounds great taking vocals on several of the Stooges' numbers, and it's high praise to bassist Chris "Box" Taylor and drummer Andrew Frost that they don't just keep up with the frontline talent, but push them gloriously into the red zone. The best rock & roll live albums are the ones that leave you saying, "Man, I would have loved to have seen that," and anyone who digs high-energy Detroit-style rock & roll will listen with slack-jawed glee to Ann Arbor Revival Meeting, imagining they'd been at the Blind Pig this particular evening. Thankfully, a good recording engineer was on hand to capture the fury for the folks who couldn't make it, and the results are 66 minutes of heavily amplified bliss.

blue highlight denotes track pick