Don't Tell the Band

Don't Tell the Band

4.0 1
by Widespread Panic
     
 

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If bands like Phish and the String Cheese Incident are the jam-rock world's equivalent of spaceships seeking to transport listeners to new dimensions, Widespread Panic are the genre's answer to a pickup truck -- unfussy, unfancy, but guaranteed to get you where you need to go, whatever the terrain. Here,

Overview

If bands like Phish and the String Cheese Incident are the jam-rock world's equivalent of spaceships seeking to transport listeners to new dimensions, Widespread Panic are the genre's answer to a pickup truck -- unfussy, unfancy, but guaranteed to get you where you need to go, whatever the terrain. Here, the Dixie-bred combo returns to the indie ranks and departs -- at times -- from its traditional mid-tempo choogle to examine the realms of Crescent City funk ("Thought Sausage") and sunny Iberian groove ("Casa del Grillo"). Widespread haven't, however, lost their flair for the loping, back-porch boogie on which they built their following. Here, frontman John Bell guides the sextet through renditions both sweet (the folksy "Old Joe") and spicy (the driving, slide-laced "Give"), even stopping to pay tribute to spiritually kindred workingmen fIREHOSE (via a cover of that band's "Sometimes"). Don't Tell the Band may be built for comfort, not for speed, but sitting back and letting the Panic wash over you can be mighty refreshing at the end of a long day.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Tom Semioli
As the years roll by, Widespread Panic refine their artistry impervious to trend or fashion. On their seventh album, the veteran ensemble settles into a groove within the first few seconds and never lets up through 12 tracks that burn with roots rock, Latin, jazz fusion, grunge, melodic folk, and soul. Displaying more polish than previous releases, each musician shines on this collection that gives fans what they come to expect from one of the best jam bands to emerge after the demise of the Grateful Dead and the decline of the Allman Brothers Band. Up in the mix from start to finish, Dave Schools' irresistibly funky bass anchors "Big Wooly Mammoth" and "Imitation Leather Shoes" with staccato figures and crispy riffs. John Herman and Michael Houser solo with the delicate urgency of Bill Evans and Carlos Santana, respectively, especially on the opening cut, "Little Lilly." Domingo Ortiz and Todd Nance propel the tunes with polyrhythms and multiple percussive textures that subtly embellish each melody and chord change. Vocalist John Bell croons, growls, and raps while waxing poetic about personal relationships and astute observations of the world around him. The hooks on "Sometimes" recall the tunefulness of 1970s AM radio, while the country-blues of "Old Joe," the title track, and "Down" slip on like a comfortable pair of old cowboy boots. The members of Widespread Panic are pros and they reap the benefits of longevity with a jewel of an album.

Product Details

Release Date:
01/25/2011
Label:
Imports
UPC:
5050159008728
catalogNumber:
927586
Rank:
34640

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Don't Tell the Band 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Twelve songs and it sounds like 12 different bands. Widespread Panic is basic rock & roll, but everything sounds fresh. ''This Part of Town'' has made the radio, but it isn't the only good tune. Good stuff.