Amazon UK has been awash recently with recordings of old FM radio concerts from dubious record labels whose release quality does not rank alongside the original recording and often claim some spurious remastering. Bruce Springsteen heavily bootlegged 1978 US tour is a case in point. Here again is another example of this phenomena released earlier this year on MP3 and now on CD. Any fan of Little Feat will probably have an excellent copy of this recording already. If not a short trip around the internet will deliver it immediately to your door without forking out any cash to some record front for Crime Incorporated.
This is soundboard recording of Little Feat live at Ultrasonic Studios, Hempstead, NY. September 19th, 1974 playing in front of a small invited audience and broadcast on WLIR-FM. It was originally bootlegged as Electrif Lycanthrope in the 1970s and two versions have circulated ever since. You need to get the one from the legal Internet Archive Site, a well respected and kosher source endorsed by artists as varied as the Grateful Dead, Ryan Adams and the lSmashing Pumpkins. Seek out the version that includes the medley from a another session "Cold, Cold, Cold/Dixie Chicken/Tripe Face Boogie". This "hybrid" is by far the most superior version and is excellent quality.
Little Feat had the tightest rhythm section of any Seventies band bar none. With the god like genius of the late Lowell George's snaky dual leads with Paul Barrere and the bands sheer greasy funkiness they were critically lauded by the great and the good including fanatical support from John Peel and Jimmy Page. As a live band it was almost impossible to capture the sheer energy they generated famously blowing the Doobie Brothers off stage in London during the mid seventies. (although the brilliant extended double "Waiting for Columbus" is an unimpeachable live album). "Electrif Lyncanthrope" is stunning. This is Little Feat in their absolute prime and it was clear at the time that Lowell George was expressing worries to the sound engineers about the bootleg potential of these shows. Particularly outstanding is that classic Little Feat vehicle the "Spanish Moon/Skin It Back/ Fat Man in the Bathtub" medley which is as good as anything on Waiting For Columbus. Incredibly on the MP3 version some abject fool who should be sectioned has separated out the three songs into individual tracks! This set also includes possibly the best version of "The Fan" you will hear; a hot blast of funky jazz rock with a superb George vocal. Other classics such as "Willin', "Rock n Roll Doctor" and the bands splendid cover of Allen Toussaint's "On your way down" are well served here.
So there you have it. Do not fork out any cash for this just head to the legal site "Internet Archive" dedicated to the free and open use of the net. The full details of the tracks and their recordings are set out below.
Rock n' Roll Doctor
On Your Way Down
Spanish Moon >
Skin It Back >
Fat Man In The Bath Tub
Cold Cold Cold >
Dixie Chicken >
Tripe Face Boogie
Tracks 1-9 Source: PRE-FM (Master 1/2 Track Broadcast RR) >
Mastering (Custom Analog & Digital 10/04) >WAV
Tracks 10-12 Source :FM rebroadcast on WLIR
Review by Red on Black