This week, we will review one of the greatest live albums of all times, no less…
Built To Spill – “Live“ – 2000
Formed in the early 90’s in the great city of Boise, Idaho, Built to Spill reached this year their fourth decade of existence without too much noise. Well… this is a matter of speaking really as their sound can be defined like a balance of their two main influences Neil Young and Pavement. Not a bad start indeed but as all great bands, they are much more than the sum of these. With their leader Doug Martsch, they have an extremely talented songwriter with the voice of an angel… in the body of a lumberjack. They ‘only’ released eight studio albums of original material since the start of their career, which to me properly represents what this band are; more craftsmen than showbiz guys really.
“Live” may not be the most original title for a live album but at least it delivers the goods. Released in 2000, it was recorded during a few live sessions or gigs throughout 1999 in different American cities such a New York or Seattle for instance. With a total duration over one hour and ten minutes for only eleven tracks, one can guess that indeed a few tracks are very long. No surprise here as well because this band are never better than when they play on stage. The tracks on this album are a mix of originals from their 90’s LP’s and a few covers as usual, with a specific mention to the ‘tour de force’ 20-minute version of Neil Young’s “Cortez The Killer” from his fantastic “Zuma” album. If you like ambitious and bittersweet melodies or gorgeous and endless guitar solos with an indie mindset, this record is for you.
Format: LP Bought in: 2013 To be noted: I first had this album in 2004 from the Strasbourg library when discovering the joys of burning CD’s in mp3. I acquired the vinyl version in 2013 as this was one of the reissues of Record Store Day that year. Rating: 9.5/10