Reviews

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There is something about the energy created by people coming together to hear the music of Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead. The first time I experienced this seemingly human-powered electricity was a few days before my 18th birthday, in 1994, in a parking lot near what was then the Boston Garden. When Jerry died the following summer, I found myself in a park sitting in a circle around a singular candle that seemed to burn for hours.

Scenes from “An Evening with Shovels and Rope” include: A baby’s carriage in front of a tour bus adjacent line that wrapped around the block; the look of confusion from fans as they pile in to find this general admission show to be completely seated; and Carrie Ann Hearst and Michael Trent taking the stage in pink velour matching dress and suit.

Shovels & Rope does what they want.

Founding members Phil Lesh and Bob Weir, of Grateful Dead fame, playing as a duo without a backing band for the first time together, ended their “Bobby and Phil Tour” with two, consecutive nights at the Chicago Theatre, after selling out New York’s Radio City Music Hall and Boston’s Wang Center.

“If you pour some music on whatever’s wrong, it’ll sure help out,” Levon Helm once said. Fruition brings this to bear on their new record, “Watching It All Fall Apart,” a dynamic meditation on heartbreak and loss. Released on February 2, 2018 on LoHi Records, their fifth full length album is filled with Fruition’s uniquely resonant sound, brimming with powerful lyrics, lush harmonies, and groovetastic melodies.

In everything, balance. We aspire towards it. We lie about having it. Balance is a common tie between so many aspects of our being. Work and play, sleep and wake. Eastern, Greek and modern philosophies are steeped in it. Even a silver lining needs a touch of grey. But, why are we pre-programmed to seek balance? Why can’t we overload our individual tastes? Who says too much of everything isn’t just enough?

Dead & Company had to postpone the originally scheduled Fall Tour 2017 South Florida show Dec 8, 2017, when John Mayer needed an emergency appendectomy.  Monday, February 26, 2018, was the rescheduled show. They say timing is everything.  The show came on the heels of the Parkland school shooting tragedy. Coincidence for sure but Dead & Company brought their kindness and love to a community in need of healing through the universal language of music.

“Epic Psychedelic Funky Jams”. The only four words to sum up the high-octane sounds of the Supernatural Beings shows this weekend at Be On Key Psychedelic Ripple in Denver.  February 23rd and 24th, four extraordinarily talented artists joined together to create one super band. SuperNatural Beings, originated by Shred is Dead guitarist, Marcus Rezak, is composed of members from several bands in the jam community.

ALO on February 23 delivered a wondrous two-set performance in Sacramento that was an excellent representation of how the jammy, jazzy, funky, poppy, electronica four-piece displays its lively endeavors of excellence. Such musical escapades, in turn, visibly pleased the audience, many of whom were “on the bus” for many gigs the band’s 12th annual Tour d’Amour, which always runs before and after Valentine’s Day. Singer-songwriter John Craigie opened the show.

Two powerhouse bands in one night made for an incredible evening of music at the Park West Chicago on 2/17/2018.  Night two of the 2-night run was a packed house filled with gawking jaws agape at the Grammy-winning Infamous Stringdusters together with the loveable Leftover Salmon.  It was one of those shows that leaves you knowing what music should look and sound like.

Dark Star Orchestra came “high-stepping” into Eugene (Ore.) last Monday night and fulfilled their bold promise to “continue the Grateful Dead concert experience” which is no easy feat. A substantial, multi-generational crowd of familiar faces gathered to glow wild and celebrate the reawakening.