The J. Geils Band were at a bit of a crossroads in 1979. They spent the past decade working hard, releasing a record a year and touring their ass off, labor that started to pay off with 1978's Sanctuary, which produced their first Top Ten hit in four years via "One Last Kiss." A year later, they'd start to climb even higher, but in 1979 they were just another working rock & roll band, playing gig after gig, including this spot for Rockpalast on German television. Released in 2015 as a CD/DVD set, House Party: Live in Germany finds the J. Geils Band in fine form -- maybe not as rampaging as the two official live albums from the '70s (1972's "Live" Full House and 1976's Blow Your Face Out), but it's a seriously solid performance, drawing heavily on Sanctuary and building to a galloping encore of "Pack Fair and Square" and "First I Look at the Purse," where it seems like the quintet is in an every-man-for-himself race to the finish line. Not the first choice if you're looking for '70s J. Geils Band, but if you're thirsting for more of a good thing, this will satisfy.
AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine