It's a Beautiful Day — Live at the Fillmore '68
(Classic Music Vault CMV0220, 1968/2013, CD+DVD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2013-08-21
The two disc package at hand contains two very different things: a CD of the live band in 1968, almost ten months before the release of their self-titled debut album, and a documentary DVD The David Laflamme Story, which focuses on the singer, violinist and bandleader, with interviews and footage of the band playing live interspersed – mostly the current version of the band in 2012, with clips from 1978, 1980, and all the years between, plus some still images from back in the early days. It gives the viewer a good retrospective of the band’s career from the very beginning. The current seven-piece edition of the band is the longest running version with no personnel changes, and because of that probably the tightest band throughout IABD’s history, and the live footage here bears this out. The interview features guest appearances by Barry Melton (CJ&F) and Peter Albin (BBHC) plus San Francisco Chronicle music writer Joel Selvin, who give some additional perspective.
The CD takes us back 45 years to a point when the band had only been together a little over a year, and although they were becoming known in their home base of San Francisco, it would be another year before their debut album introduced them to the outside world. The material is culled from three nights at the Fillmore (May 23, 24, and 25, 1968), at a time when the band was a five-piece with no guitarist. There are early live (and in several cases radically different) versions of all seven cuts on the band’s debut album, along with three more worthy numbers (“Changes,” “Countryside,” and “Love for You”) that never made it to any album. For recordings that were never intended for release, the quality is very respectable. This writer has heard the original bootlegs of all three shows that these cuts were taken from, and a lot of clean-up work has been done to improve the sound. All taken this is a welcome addition to the It’s a Beautiful Day canon; one can only hope there are more early recordings from this era that will find a release in the future.
Related artist(s): It's a Beautiful Day
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more
Seaprog 2019 Lineup Almost Complete – The Seaprog festival in Seattle is scheduled for June 7-9 this year, and they've announced their lineup of performers. The revitalized Trettioåriga Kriget will cap Friday night, perennial favorites Marbin are on Saturday, and District 97 will finish off the fest on Sunday night. In support, they've booked a stellar variety of artists from the Northwest and around the world, including EchoTest, Markus Reuter and Trey Gunn, and the live debut of the amazing Troot project. » Read more