What a great (double) record. The beauty of this record is the amazing evolution that Counting Crows songs go through when they are played live.
Counting Crows is the definative live band. Every show is completely different that the last. It is impressive to hear what they have captured on these two CDs. Many songs are repeated between the CDs. 'Round Here, Rain King, and Have You Seen Me Lately, to name a few. None of which are the "same." Each repeated song has a completely different musical arrangement. Each song showing, one, how talented this band is, and two, how tight they are as a group. There is a lot to be said about how well a band can communicate and predict, especially when there is a great deal of improv.
A live record was totally in the natural progression of a band like this. Their shows are what makes them so special. Bands like DMB have great live shows, but the fact that what I hear on their 5+ live albums is all too similar to what is on the CD, makes me not want to buy their live material. It is the opposite with the Crows. Everytime they play, they play a new song, even if it is old. They could release entire tours and you'd never hear the same show twice.