Courtesy: Foghat Records
This spring, veteran rock band Foghat will release its latest live recording to the masses. Recorded on Aug. 11, 2016, Live at the Belly Up will be released exclusively on CD in May. The 11-song recording’s exact in-store release date has not yet been announced. However, it is available now online via the Belly Up website. It will also be available via iTunes and Amazon soon. This latest live offering from one of rock’s greatest names offers audiences plenty to appreciate beginning with its set list. That will be discussed shortly. The band’s performance throughout its seventy-four-minute set is just as important to note as the show’s set in examining the recording’s overall presentation. It will be discussed later. The set’s sequencing rounds out the most important of the recording’s elements. It brings everything full circle. When all three elements are considered together, they present this recording as an easy early pick for one of the year’s top new live CDs.
Foghat’s latest live recording Live at the Belly Up is an easy early pick for any critic’s list of the year’s top new live CD recordings. That is as opposed to the year’s top new live DVDs and Blu-rays, since it appears there are no plans to release the concert on either platform, but rather only digitally and on CD. It is enjoyable enough that it would be nice to see it released on DVD and /or Blu-ray, though. That aside, the concert’s CD presentation still boasts enough positives that it proves it won’t go *ahem* belly up itself. One of its most important elements is its set list. The 11-song, 74-minute set is not necessarily career-defining. That is because not every one of its 16 studio albums is represented here. That aside, the set list still is a solid representation of the band’s body of work to date. It takes audiences back to the band’s 1972 self-titled debut record and right up to the band’s latest full-length studio recording, 2016’s Under The Influence. Also getting nods in this concert’s set are the band’s 1974 album Rock and Roll Outlaws, its 1975 record Fool For The City, Night Shift (1976) and Stone Blue (1978). The show launches with an extensive 11-minute plus medley that features ‘Fool For The City’ and ‘Eight Days on the Road.’ From there, the band transitions to the title track from Under The Influence, keeping the energy flowing. That transition (and others) will be discussed later. From start to finish, it is clear that the band aimed to reach as many of its audiences as possible. To that end, the band is to be applauded. It is just one of the reasons the band is to be commended in this recording. It is to be commended just as much for its performance of its set list as for the set list alone.
The set list at the center of Foghat’s new live recording is in itself a key piece of the recording’s presentation. While not career-defining, it does show that the band clearly wanted to reach as many audiences as possible. While the set list is clearly a key piece of the recording’s presentation, it is just one of the recording’s key elements. The band’s performance of the set list is just as important to note as the set list itself in examining the recording’s overall presentation. While the concert is presented in an audio-only format, it is clear in listening to the concert that the band’s members gave it their all in each song, letting their performances do the talking for them instead of wasting time between songs rambling on aimlessly. It can be assumed through this that the band likely didn’t waste any energy with on-stage antics, either. Hopefully a full video recording of the concert will eventually be released to prove that, too. Being that it sounds like the band put all of its collective energies into its performance, rather than wasting those energies, it makes the band’s performance in whole entirely enjoyable from beginning to end. This proves clearly why the band’s performance is so important to the recording’s presentation. As important as it is to the recording’s presentation, it still is not the last of the recording’s most important elements. The set’s sequencing is important in its own right, too.
The set list featured in Foghat’s new live recording and the band’s performance thereof are both key elements of its overall presentation. While they are both important to the recording’s presentation, they are not the recording’s only key items. The set list’s sequencing is important to examine, too. It has already been pointed out that the set list shows a clear attempt by the band to reach as many audiences as possible over the course of its 11 songs. On another level, the set’s ordering shows just as much thought. The set list begins with a couple of classic compositions before moving into a much more recent piece in its second (technically third) song. From there, the band goes back in time again with two more classics in ‘Stone Blue’ and ‘Drivin’ Wheel.’ What’s interesting to note of those songs is that ‘Stone Blue,’ while a classic, is still more recent than ‘Drivin’ Wheel.’ To that end, the band still followed the “newer/older” formula that spans the course of the show’s set list. That constant back and forth ensures the band never sticks to one part of its career or another at any one point. It keeps the set list mixed up all while covering as much of its back catalogue as possible. That being the case, it shows that just as much thought went into the set list’s sequencing as the set list’s featured songs. That in turn adds even more depth and enjoyment to the concert. When it is joined with the set’s featured songs and the band’s performance of those songs, the end result is a concert that Foghat fans of all ages will enjoy equally. It combines to exhibit in whole why this recording is an easy early pick for any critic’s list of the year’s top new live CDs.
Foghat’s new live recording Belly Up is a live show that is sure to do anything but go belly up. This 11-song, 74-minute recording is an easy, early pick for any critic’s list of the year’s top new live CDs. That is due in part to a set list that spans a respectable portion of the band’s catalogue. The band’s performance of that extensive set list is just as important to the recording’s presentation as its set list. That is because of the energy put into the performance by each of the band’s members. The set list’s sequencing rounds out the concert’s most important elements. Each element shows, as noted already, to be important in its own way to the recording’s presentation. All things considered, this recording proves to be one that will do anything but go belly up. Rather, it will be an easy pick for any critic’s list of the year’s top new live CDs. The recording is available now online via The Belly Up’s website. It will be available later this spring on CD in stores. More information on Live at the Belly Up is available online now along with all of Foghat’s latest news and more at:
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