Author Topic: Bona Fide Review -  (Read 1231 times)


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Bona Fide Review -
« on: October 17, 2003, 10:46:48 am »

Psychedelic Breakfast
Bona Fide
Sonance Records

The live album. It costs a lot less to make than a studio disc and it can capture the raw energy of the band in its native element. Live albums, once a rarity, are becomming more and more prevalent as a way to get material to new ears and also give a nice crispy-sounding live recording to the fans. Psychedelic Breakfast\'s new live album, Bona Fide, is a prime example of how to make a live album. Recorded on September 14th, 2002 at Pearl St in Northampton, MA, Bona Fide captures the best of what Psychedelic Breakfast has to offer - hard-hitting rockers, drawn-out jams, and intricate compositions.

Bona Fide begins with a bang. The first tune, "Drunk Monk Bar" comes out fighting. This song is down and dirty rocking at it\'s best. The growling, bluesy, Hendrix-like vocal delivery perfectly complements the short jam that accompanies the song. Guitarist Tim Palmieri screams through his solo while the rest of the band holds him up and somehow eggs him on.

Two ingredients in a good live album are a good cover and a special guest musician. Psychedelic Breakfast decided to mix these two together in the cover of The Allman Brothers Band\'s "Hot\'lanta", featuring Seth Yacovone on Guitar. The two guitars in this song really bring a new feeling to Psychedelic Breakfast and even leads this review to think that they\'d really benefit from adding a permanent guitarist. Keyboardist Jordan Giangreco takes the first solo, an agressive B3 workout that sets the energy for Yacovone\'s solo. Meanwhile, Palmieri is doing some really interesting rhythm work. After a solo from Palmieri there\'s a short three-way duel between Yacovone, Palmieri, and Giangreco that\'s explosive.

All live albums have a one or more songs that aren\'t all that great. On Bona Fide, "Wild Pack of Asscracks" is probably the best example of a bad song. The song starts agressively and drops into a quiet groove with spacey-effects vocals. After that it falls into generic jamband hell. The extra annoying vocal bridge is enough to make the hand unconsciously hit the \'skip\' button on the cd player. Even the very Phish-like jam that follows isn\'t enough to rescue this turd.

And what\'s a live album without a drum solo? In this case drummer Adrian Tramontano get a whole track to himself. The nearly five min "23 Drum Solo" is a fast-paced drum excursion. This reviewer absolutely loathes drum solos, but is willing to admit that not everyone is as easily bored and some people actually like these moments of pure percussion. That being said, Tramontano is a great drummer and the solo isn\'t completely boring.

The final important ingredient in a good live album is the epic song. In the case of Bona Fide, the song is "Rufus," a nearly 20 min jamfest. It starts quietly and builds to a magestic peak before falling into a reggae groove for the vocal section. A long jam follows, lead mostly by Palmieri, but excellent work by bassist Ron Spears, who is worth zeroing in on and listening to for extended periods of time.

Psychedelic Breakfast sounds a lot like a mix between Zappa and Phish. There are moments throughout Bona Fide where it sounds almost exactly one artist or the other. There are upsides and downsides to this - while the material is easily accessable because it feels vaguely familiar, there\'s a need to hear something different. The songs on Bona Fide hint at what unique identity Psychedelic Breakfast may grow into later. But for now it sounds pretty good and sometimes that\'s all that matters.

- brooks williams


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Bona Fide Review -
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2003, 08:14:40 pm »
not that bad at all.ive read some superharsh ones.
take the E to the A to the\'ll be all set


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Bona Fide Review -
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2003, 10:37:44 am »
That is a nice review. I don\'t see how Wild Pack is a bad song, however, and I really can\'t stand it when PB is compared to Phish. Maybe two songs, the middle section in See The Light, and Episode One have a Phish-like feel to it. But, I don\'t think they sound like Phish at all. As for Bonafide, I was and still am quite impressed by it. I am usually wary of jamband-albums, as they often sound quite processed. But PB does it right and I really dig Bonafide, I don\'t think it sounds real processed at all.
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