Lannie Flowers Live in NYC – A Review
Before a note is played, Lannie Flowers and his band make an impression. Firstly, the collective wingspan of the band members would rival thought of a 747. They’re probably the only band around today that could legitimately state that they are “bigger” than The Who. Secondly, Flowers’ records are full of memorable two and a half minute bursts of pure pop, each song with more hooks than the last. Their energy comes across in their live shows, which I had the good fortune to witness a couple years back at one of David Bash’s IPO festivals.
So, having learned that he had put down a live performance in wax (or CD plastic, as it were) for posterity, I was curious as to whether the energy would translate to this medium. I’m pleased to say that it does – quite well.
Recorded on November 19 at the Trash Bar in Brooklyn, the performance features songs from both Flowers’ 2010 release, Circles, and 2012’s New Songs, Old Stories. “Give Me A Chance” is a catchy as hell start to the disc, followed by my favorite song about insomnia, “Around The World”. Another favorite from Circles, “Favorite Song”, follows and soon the listener gets caught up in a succession of one great pop hook after another. Other highlights include “Where Does Love Go” (love that George Harrison-esque guitar!), “Come On Girl”, “Another Weekend”, and “Turn Up Your Radio”, an anthemic number one simply cannot help but sing along to.
The band also does an awesome cover of Big Star’s “Back of a Car” that’ll knock you out. You have my word on that.
While this recording does a good job of catching the energy of the band as well as to showcase the wealth of good material in a typical set, my one wish is that they had mic’ed the room better so as to capture the crowd a bit. It might have further contributed to their attempt to relay the live experience to those who have not yet had the opportunity to see them perform live.