2013 Grammy Nomination: Best Pop Instrumental Album
I know this guy! By which, I mean, I've reviewed this guy's music before. "Hello Tomorrow," I believe, was nominated in this category last year and Dave is part of the reason I was so crazy about the category. That being said, I'm obviously super happy that he's still finding success and putting out more music. This is actually Dave's first live CD, and features a lot of his greatest hits from over the past two decades of performing.
"What You Leave Behind" starts with this saxophone solo that goes on with nothing else for the first minute or so. I didn't even remember this was a live album until a break in the solo where the audience came in clapping. Then the whole band comes in, and away we go with the show!
Then we kick up the beat a little bit with "Together Again." We get into more of a rock mode where the guitar seems to start things off and Dave takes it on a bit later. There's a bit of funk to this one, so if you were expecting a light rock, sentimental album, well, you're getting it in a different way than originally anticipated. At least, that's my story and approach here, and I am being delightfully mistaken.
"Put the Top Down" finally gives us a welcome to the night, their final night in Tokyo apparently. Randy Jacobs is on guitar. He calls this the perfect song for summertime, and I have to agree. It's got a bit of sunshine should strewn throughout that's really cool for the highway in the warm weather.
Dave is a pretty nice host. He gives his audience some kind of reference point for the music, because let's face it, this kind of music is hard to remember off hand as to where it came from and when. "Let It Free" is a song out of 2003, and has an excellent light rock sound to it as, again, the saxophone and guitar trade back and forth with the frontal melodies.
"Anything's Possible" is not a cover of a song from "Seussical" (it's sad that not many people will understand that). It's a cute little number of ups and downs that'll probably get you tapping your toes just a little bit. There is this one incredibly obnoxious part around the three minute mark where is sounds like a CD is skipping. But, anywhos, moving on.
We slow things down ever-so-slightly for "Love Is On The Way." Saxophone takes the total lead on this one, singing out some romance as needed. There's a little breakdown part where I got a little confused as to their intentions anymore, but in a six-minute instrumental track I supposed you do have to vary it up just a little bit.
"It's Always Been You" is unbearably sweet for the sad lonely girl in me. I mean, you can tell in the title, and thus are prompted to feel, that there's a realization of longing love there and that it's always been there… I mean, duh, the title implies it right? The instruments fall again and again like stars, and it's just so damn sweet it's making my toothache hurt just a little more. Oh, and please tell me that's the reciprocation about halfway through. Sigh.
I almost missed "All I See Is You" as it came on so seamlessly from the last song. The pace was certainly stepped up though, so I'm not sure how I really missed it. I blame the tooth. Anywhos, the band is really jamming on this one, like, more so than the E Street Band ever does.
"Honeydipped" sure brings the funk level way up as we get going. It's a little gentler… no, smoother, than the last one, which is nice and different and keeps the album appealing as it goes on. I'm enjoying it as a background piece at the least.
We dip back into the romantic side of things with "Faces of the Heart." I mean, that's basically what we're doing here, right? Going from funk to love every other song or so? Or maybe there's some sadness in there too, but without lyrics I feel free to make up my own meaning here, so there. - insert raspberry -
"Silverlining" takes us into the final few song stretch. It's cute, though not necessarily what I would have expected with this title. That's probably a personal thing though. To me, the concept is something heartwarming and special. The music here is upbeat and dance-able, and not complete with a deeper sentiment. We do get a quick intro to the band at the end though.
Final song time - "You Make Me Smile." No, not an Uncle Kracker cover, but a cute song that will probably make you smile a little regardless. It's a sweet, albeit long, way to end the album, listening to the guys play us out.
Added to My Playlist:
- "It's Always Been You"
The trouble with instrumental albums is always finding brilliant individual songs that stand out. You can't judge these albums by the amount of songs I pull out for a playlist. Instead, you have to give credit to the artist's full body of work. If you can get through the whole thing without getting bored and still wind up enjoying it as a whole, you've got a good collection going on - like Mr. Koz.