Live at the Temple Bar and More

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Fishbone debuts eight new songs on Live at the Temple Bar and More, their soundtrack to the independent film Everything Went Nuttz. Acting as their first release since Hollywood Records dropped the band a year before, the album shows them performing the same blend of funk, ska, and metal that they struck upon in the late '80s. Songs like "Are U Wit It" have the tense slow crawl of a good funk song and the acidic guitar of Spacey T., and the band seems like they're having a good time on the songs here. But much like their post-Reality of My Surroundings work in the '90s, there is a certain emotional element missing for the music to truly connect. Stepping back from their own material and performing it like a crazed cover band, they never quite seem like they care about what they are playing. This is not to take away from the talents of anyone involved, especially charismatic singers Angelo Moore and Dirty Walt (aka Walter Adam Kibby II). But none of them seem like they mean it; instead delivering a confidently played album with little more than manic genre-hopping to keep things lively. In a studio setting, these songs may have had the chance to come to life, and their nuances may have been showcased. But these performances put energy before anything else, robbing these songs of their impact because of the brash performance style involved. There is much to admire on the eight tracks here, but few of them stand up to multiple listens, or are catchy enough to remember afterwards.

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