Mountain Tracks, Vol. 5

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble
Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Continuing an ongoing documentation of their live shows, the Yonder Mountain String Band return with Volume 5, two discs of live performances. The first is a frenetic show that has reached legendary proportions among YMSB faithful: a July 21, 2007 performance in Columbus, Ohio, in which the quartet surpassed even their own high-energy standard. The band doesn't possess a truly gifted singer, but the fellows' serviceable vocals get the job done and are more than well supported by dazzling displays of technical proficiency at dangerous speeds. You can sense the audience excitement surge during the rambunctious, ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble
Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Continuing an ongoing documentation of their live shows, the Yonder Mountain String Band return with Volume 5, two discs of live performances. The first is a frenetic show that has reached legendary proportions among YMSB faithful: a July 21, 2007 performance in Columbus, Ohio, in which the quartet surpassed even their own high-energy standard. The band doesn't possess a truly gifted singer, but the fellows' serviceable vocals get the job done and are more than well supported by dazzling displays of technical proficiency at dangerous speeds. You can sense the audience excitement surge during the rambunctious, infectious "Boatman's Dance" near the outset, and at times even the pickers themselves are playing at such a furious, wild-eyed pace you half expect the disc to self-destruct. This is the bluegrass jam-band ethos in full flight. Not to dismiss the vocals, though, because bassist Ben Kauffman, admitting to stealing a melody from Gordon Lightfoot, delivers a forceful but poignant evocation of lingering heartbreak in his own deceptively sprightly kiss-off, "Must've Had Your Reasons." Disc 2 is a collection of the band members' favorite live numbers from the past couple of years. It includes a YMSB concert favorite, Bill Monroe's "Kentucky Mandolin," which also appears in a slightly longer version on Mountain Tracks: Volume 3, and in both cases is an occasion for extended theme and development jamming that takes it into territory where Mr. Bill never ventured, although its propulsive rush and angular contours are familiar to the jam band aficionados populating the band's audience. Wacky, alternating vocals and an exhaustive pace mark a breakneck version of Ralph Stanley's "If I Lose," during which banjoist Dave Johnston sparkles with a speed-picked song-length solo. Nothing transcendent here, but a rousing good time ensues nonetheless.
All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
Yonder Mountain String Band have made a practice of releasing at least one live album in their Mountain Tracks series for every studio release, and are now up to five concert collections against four studio sets. The group has managed to come up with different concepts for the live discs, perhaps in an attempt to keep ahead of the tapers who record their shows and trade with others. For Mountain Tracks, Vol. 5, a two-CD set, the bandmembers have taken different tacks for each disc. Disc one is an anthology of previously unreleased performances drawn from the period 2004-2007, sequenced and edited to provide the illusion of a single show. Disc two really is a single show, recorded on July 21, 2007. In practice, the two CDs taken together have an effect not unlike seeing Yonder Mountain String Band on an evening when they played an early set and a late set, or did a long concert with an intermission. The first set contains more concise songs, played in tighter arrangements. The second set is the looser one in which the bandmembers stretch out, worrying less about getting every note correct and more about musical exploration and feel. In both sets, the players' enthusiasm is contagious and their interplay creates a band effect that goes beyond the individual virtuosity of any one musician. At a time of diminishing record sales, when albums are becoming, more than ever before, souvenirs and calling cards for artists' live shows, Yonder Mountain String Band don't seem to have too much to worry about if their fans can depend on hearing shows as impressive as the ones documented here.

Yonder Mountain String Band have made a practice of releasing at least one live album in their Mountain Tracks series for every studio release, and are now up to five concert collections against four studio sets. The group has managed to come up with different concepts for the live discs, perhaps in an attempt to keep ahead of the tapers who record their shows and trade with others. For Mountain Tracks, Vol. 5, a two-CD set, the bandmembers have taken different tacks for each disc. Disc one is an anthology of previously unreleased performances drawn from the period 2004-2007, sequenced and edited to provide the illusion of a single show. Disc two really is a single show, recorded on July 21, 2007. In practice, the two CDs taken together have an effect not unlike seeing Yonder Mountain String Band on an evening when they played an early set and a late set, or did a long concert with an intermission. The first set contains more concise songs, played in tighter arrangements. The second set is the looser one in which the bandmembers stretch out, worrying less about getting every note correct and more about musical exploration and feel. In both sets, the players' enthusiasm is contagious and their interplay creates a band effect that goes beyond the individual virtuosity of any one musician. At a time of diminishing record sales, when albums are becoming, more than ever before, souvenirs and calling cards for artists' live shows, Yonder Mountain String Band don't seem to have too much to worry about if their fans can depend on hearing shows as impressive as the ones documented here.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/15/2008
  • Label: Frog Pad
  • UPC: 800314902126
  • Catalog Number: 408
  • Sales rank: 34,448

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Sideshow Blues (5:54)
  2. 2 Boatman's Dance (4:57)
  3. 3 Must've Had Your Reasons (2:57)
  4. 4 Long Time (3:11)
  5. 5 Nothin' But Nothin' (2:42)
  6. 6 Didn't Go Wrong (3:15)
  7. 7 Don't Let Your Deal Go Down (4:08)
  8. 8 Southbound (3:57)
  9. 9 Things You're Selling (4:23)
  10. 10 Near Me (3:24)
  11. 11 Head of That Woman (2:17)
  12. 12 King Ebeneezer (6:34)
  13. 13 Ten (8:16)
Disc 2
  1. 1 New Horizons (6:41)
  2. 2 East Nashville Easter (5:47)
  3. 3 New Horizons (4:55)
  4. 4 40 Miles from Denver (4:43)
  5. 5 Night Out (5:00)
  6. 6 Different Day (4:22)
  7. 7 Part 1 (Lord Only Knows) (3:05)
  8. 8 Kentucky Mandolin (7:22)
  9. 9 If I Lose (3:47)
  10. 10 Looking Back Over My Shoulder (7:51)
  11. 11 Death Trip (7:41)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Yonder Mountain String Band Primary Artist
Jeff Austin Mandolin
Adam Aijala Guitar, Group Member
Ben Kaufmann Bass, Group Member
Dave Johnston Banjo
Technical Credits
David Glasser Mastering
Bill Ball Cover Photo
Traditional Composer
Yonder Mountain String Band Composer
Chris Tetzeli Management
Adam Beyrer Engineer
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