With Rocket 3, future-minded jam band the Disco Biscuits have two live releases in their catalog for 2006. Just like The Wind at Four to Fly, its slightly older brother, Rocket 3 is released by the Diamond Riggs label, so expect expertly mixed, excellent sound quality. However, the similarities stop there, because Rocket 3 is an easier introduction to the band since it's only one disc -- and even if three out of the four tracks here break the 18-minute mark, this set feels lean in comparison. The disc captures the entire third set of the Biscuits' 2004 New Year's Eve performance in New York City, plus that night's encore, "Hope" from the Señor Boombox album. The set has long been a fan favorite and a must for every fanatic's trade list, but none of the boots have sounded this good. The main reason for the set's lofty status is the whirling performance of "Magellan," which joyfully captures the freedom and mystery of travel and exploration. The Bisco dance party rolls on with the positive head-trip "Frog Legs" before a fierce segue brings the slinkier, sticky and funky "Crickets," which is just begging for a trip-hop remix. "Hope" is a fine if forgettable bonus, but it's not the album's biggest flaw. That would be the vocals, which make Jerry Garcia sound like Luciano Pavarotti and have been a problem since day one. Bisco fans have some kind of chip installed that allows them to stomach a whole lot of amateurish singing, and with all the exhilarating synth swoops and infectious beats found here, it's easier to understand their forgiveness than ever before. If you're a fan, this pivotal set has never had a better showcase. If you're just Bisco-curious, skip their less exciting studio albums and their cumbersome multi-disc sets, and try this one on for size.
|Label:||Sci Fidelity Records|