label: Bama Rags / RCA
our score: 3.5 out of 5.0
It can be argued
that Dave Matthews Band's biggest mistake of their career was
the release of 2001's Everyday. The album found the band
straying wildly from their preset formula through which they had
earned unbelievably immense fanbase. Gone were the acoustic guitars,
the extended jams, and the sound that set the band apart from
most other rock bands. What replaced them was a new sound with
a new producer and an overall shoddy attempt at a pure rock album.
However, during this
time there was also one of the largest bootlegging fiascos of
all time. Prior to the release of Everyday the band had
worked with their longtime producer, Steve Lillywhite, during
which time they created what many fans argued to be some of their
best music to date. Sadly these tracks were all scrapped in favor
of a change of direction with new producer, Glen Ballard (Alanis
Morissette). Still, the so-called "Lillywhite Sessions"
managed to leak their way onto the Internet and into the hands
of thousands of fans hungry for the Dave Matthews Band they all
knew and loved so dearly.
In response to the
fanatical embrace of "The Lillywhite Sessions" (and
more than likely a knee-jerk reaction to the poor repsonse of
Everyday) the band went back to the studio, re-recorded
several selections from the ill-fated sessions, and have released
them as a new album - aptly titled Busted Stuff.
Featuring a return
to their jam-rock roots explored so heavily on their "classic"
albums Under the Table and Dreaming and Crash,
Busted Stuff finds the band exercising its greatest skills.
Songs are ripe with Matthews's acoustic guitar and the sax and
violin infusions of Boyd Tinsley and Leroi Moore. They're tracks
well-suited for the extended jams so prominent in the band's live
shows, and they're undoubtedly some of the band's best work to
Another welcome change
with the new album is Dave Matthew's near-abandonment of drunken
lovesick singalongs, a move which shows the songwriting talent
Matthews truly has but rarely exhibits.
is without a doubt the album "Dave" fans have been yearning
for, regardless of whether or not they've already invested their
time or money into "The Lillywhite Sessions." There's
a reason these tracks had become some of the most highly-traded
and sought-after music of all time - they're pretty damn good.
liked Busted Stuff...