As the title implies, this disc captures the Bay Area-based It's a Beautiful Day in concert at the venerable New York City performance Mecca Carnegie Hall. Although the band was on the road supporting their third long-player, Choice Quality Stuff/Anytime, the track list contains only "The Grand Camel Suite" from that disc. So, rather than re-treading material, Live at Carnegie Hall includes several new tunes from the band, as well as a couple of classics and well-chosen covers. As with many of the San Francisco groups to gain prominence during the late '60s and early '70s, It's a Beautiful Day is best experienced in the interactive and reciprocal atmosphere of a live performance. The band uses their ability to stretch and reshape familiar works such as "A Hot Summer Day" or their incendiary reading of "Bombay Calling" -- the latter featuring some jaw-dropping contributions from future Frank Zappa bassist Tom Fowler. His counter melodies and fluid timekeeping add a fullness and an additional dimension to the rocking version of "White Bird" and the cover of Taj Mahal's "Give Your Woman What She Wants." Fowler's own composition, "Going to Another Party," highlights the amazing ensemble work of this incarnation of It's a Beautiful Day. Particularly inspired is the frenetic violin of David LaFlamme, who gives a workout to the new track "Good Lovin'" and the extended "Hot Summer Day." It is a shame that this platter has been out of print on CD since the early '90s, as it reveals an edgier side to the band, primarily known for their one hit, "White Bird." Live at Carnegie Hall is not only more representative of the group's true nature, but also the way they deserve to be heard and remembered.
AllMusic Review by Lindsay Planer