Live Tracks

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Live Tracks Review

by Bruce Eder

Southern rock never got any better than you hear it here, unless maybe it was in the hands of the Allman Brothers on a really good night. Fortunately for Grinderswitch fans and the rest of us, leader Dru Lombar saved a ton of live radio broadcast tapes of the group from a ten-year period. These are what comprise Live Tracks, filling in the only real gap in the group's output, the lack of a concert album. The selection includes a couple of very strong originals by Lombar and Howard, but the real delights are found in their covers of standards by Freddie King ("Hideaway"), Albert King ("You're Gonna Miss Me When I'm Gone"), Elmore James ("Pickin' the Blues"), and Chuck Willis ("Stoop Down Baby"). The sounds are smooth and soaring, a mix of Southern boogie and electric blues at their very best (this is the way one wanted Derek & the Dominoes to sound in concert). Practically every cut here runs ten minutes or more, but the listener hardly knows it, because there's not a wasted note. A must-own disc, even for non-fans.

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