The Orange Peel - Asheville, NC - 10/3/03
First Appeared at The Music Box, February 2004, Volume 11, #2
Written by John Metzger
If its concert on October 3, 2003 at Asheville, North Carolina’s The Orange Peel is any indication, moe. may be at the creative apex of its career, despite the fact that its popularity reached a plateau several years ago. Fortunately for newcomers and fans alike, the magic of this event was recently released as part of the band’s new Instant Live program, which makes recordings available immediately following a performance. For the record, the group initially struggled to take flight at the Asheville show. It never found its footing during a lengthy rendition of Rebubula, and subsequent songs such as the punk-fueled bombast of Not Coming Down and She Sends Me served merely as a means for collecting its thoughts. By the end of its first set, however, moe. caught fire as it embarked on an extended bout of blissful jamming during a resplendent pairing of Hi and Lo and Head.
With music that drew from the classic rock grooves of the Grateful Dead and the Allman Brothers Band as well as from the sound of Phish at its mid-’90s peak, the remainder of The Orange Peel concert was nothing short of astounding. Guitars and bass splashed playfully amidst waves of percussion — teasing, twisting, and turning each melody into a surplus of imaginative ideas. Even the drums-and-space segment tucked inside the elliptical Brent Black kept the momentum rolling along at a mind-bending pace. Since becoming a standard addition to a band’s catalog in the 1970s, concert albums largely have been hit and miss affairs geared more towards the diehard fan than the average consumer. Yet, moe.’s Instant Live: The Orange Peel — Asheville, NC — 10/3/03 offers more than just a glimpse of the group, making it a terrific starting point for anyone interested in exploring the band’s music without the constraints typically placed upon its studio outings.
Instant Live: The Orange Peel — Asheville, NC — 10/3/03
is available from Barnes & Noble. To order, Click Here!
1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2004 The Music Box