I’ll admit, I didn’t have to dive to deep for this one. I just picked it up on vinyl because I thought I might have actually been at this concert. Turns out it was recorded a year after the show I was at, but what the hell, right?
Recorded on February 20th, 2014, Live at Massey Hall is yet another example of why Blue Rodeo is still strong as it enters its third decade. My first grown-up concert was to see Blue Rodeo at Massey Hall back in December of 1989, and I spent much of the ’90s seeing them two or three times a year at such venues as The Ontario Place Forum, The Horseshoe Tavern, and many other indoor and outdoor venues across the GTA and beyond. The 2013 show I went to was the first time I’d seen the band live in over a decade and, if anything, the band has only gotten better in the ensuing years.
Trying to pin down any stand-out tracks on Live at Massey Hall is impossible for me. All the tracks on all four sides of this vinyl are stone solid, with Cuddy, Keelor and the gang not missing a single beat or hitting one sour note. “Practised ease” is the best phrase I can come up with for the vibe that permeates this album. Playing together with no studio edits, autotune or multi-track trickery, Blue Rodeo has not just put out one of the best live albums in my collection, but one of the best, period. This album is both a gift to long-time fans as well as a great introduction to this Canadian institution.
But I’m not quite ready to completely give up on blogging music reviews, so the (A)DAR will be reborn as Dave’s Disc Dive, occasional music reviews that get thrown up whenever the heck I feel like it. Stay tuned.
It’s pretty obvious that the (Almost) Daily Album Review ain’t anything close to what it was named. It turns out that most days, once the work is done and I’ve got the turntable spinning, the last thing I want to do is stare into the computer screen again.
Seemed like a good idea at the time…