This one caught me on the hop as it’s due out at the end of the week so do excuse the brief review as the video version currently brightens my second monitor and thumps out of my speakers.
Black Stone Cherry toured a little while back, indeed they were the first band I saw after lockdown, the culmination of which was a date at the Royal Albert Hall – a venue I’ve visited once, to see the final (until the comeback tour) show by The Little Angels. This show as recorded for posterity and is coming out as a music-only, and a video release. Both have the exact same track list as far as the songs are concerned, but the video version throws in some extras as well. Rather than just watching a gig, it’s interspersed with little “tour diary” moments and archive footage which are pretty entertaining. Worth a watch, though I’m sure after a couple of viewings, most people will be settling back with just the tunes rocking out.
So, the songs. Well, it’s a typically good setlist and hits eighteen songs (and a drum solo), every one of which you’ll know if you’re a BSC fan. When you’ve chucked out as much material as the Kentucky Krew here have, then putting together a “best of” collection isn’t too hard. The trick is to make it interesting, and one way to do that is to create a live version, which is pretty much what we have here. Songs you know, rocked to the max and with extra widdly bits such as the very extended “Cheaper To Drink Alone” where the band are introduced and get to strut their stuff.
The trickiest part with any live album is getting the mix just right (without cheating and using overdubs in post), and they’ve nailed this one to the southern fried mast. The band themselves are spot on, and the audience noise creeps in when appropriate so you really do feel part of the show when you’re kicking back, sipping a bourbon and listening to the album through a good pair of headphones.
Anyone who’s seen the band live will know what to expect from this package, and those expectations will be met. A great selection of songs, no surprises, and the perfect album to tide you over until the start of next year when they hit the UK’s roads again, with The Darkness.
Live at The Royal Albert Hall, Y’all! is out on June 24th