Everclear is celebrating thirty years as a band, not an easy feat by any means. This new album release is from a live set at Whisky A Go Go in Hollywood, CA. The album features songs spanning throughout the band’s three decade long career. My first impression of the first album is that there is a good recording mix of the band without the live crowd overpowering their sound. I think we have all heard live recordings where the crowd is so loud that you can’t truly enjoy the band’s performance.
The album starts with an introduction from a friend of the band’s Matthew Pinfield. Matt hypes up the band and easily gives some information that the album will be recording and the band is celebrating thirty years together. The first song the band plays is ‘So Much For the Afterglow’, not wasting any time getting right into the music.
Lead vocalist Art Alexakis pumps up the crowd in between songs and every now and then during songs, cheering them to jump and join in with singing if they know the songs. It is not overly distracting but adds to the live aspect of the album, giving you a real feel for what the band is like to see live and enjoy their real sound.
Their arguably biggest hits ‘Father of Mine’ and ‘Santa Monica’ surprisingly weren’t openers or closers of the albums/live set. This was a pleasant surprise and gave you a bit more mystery what songs would be played if you didn’t look at the song list beforehand, also added to the mix of songs throughout their entire discography. This set was a happy mix of something of everything for any Everclear fan.
The biggest variable with any bands live set is how they will actually sound. The vocals and musical are true to what you’d expect from their recorded sound. After thirty years as a band, Art’s vocals have noticeably aged since some of the songs were recorded but his classic sound is still there and still delivers a very good performance of all the songs through the live album. The musical instruments as a collective don’t seem to miss a single beat or note from how the songs should sound also. Overall, the album is very enjoyable and any Everclear fan would enjoy listening to this on a lazy afternoon or long ride.
** Photo credit goes to Everclear/Ashley Osbourne. Found on Everclear’s website.