on 22 January 2008
It is particularly interesting to note that the concert poster for this last performance by most of the original members of the "Fish" lineup includes support from a new English Band "Led Zeppelin" along with veteran Blues Artist "Taj Mahal". The liner notes by Fish producer Sam Charters make reference to the fact that he attempted to record the previous concerts at the Fillmore East in N.Y. where The U.K. support acts had been "Procul Harem" & "Ten Years After". Since neither the Band nor the N.Y. audience had been at the top of their form in the early hours of the morning then, it was decided instead to record the three nights on the West Coast at the Fillmore West 09/10/11 - 01/69. However, just how anyone followed Led Zeppelin at that (or any other) time is a matter of conjecture but the Fish set is worthy of considerable praise for that reason alone. This is a typical San Francisco concert from one of The Bay's most innovative acts.
I concur in full the previous review of this Live album, with particular reference to the spectacular closing 38 minute Jam which includes various other Bay Area luminaries. It is indeed heady stuff, typical of the time and entirely representative of the camaraderie of the local musicians incorporating as it does, Steve Miller and prominent members of The Dead & Airplane.
What preceeds the Jam session is fairly typical of the Fish set at the time, they were bored with churning out the same old songs and elected instead to venture forth in to more experimental territory. This makes this album interesting, since it is very much a Live document of where the Band were at the time. Most of the tracks are taken from the later Albums "Here we are again" & "Together" but don`t let that deter you. If you like the early "Fish" material this expands on the free form nature of that body of work.
Well worth checking out if you are a devotee, as indeed I am, of the West Coast Scene at that glorious time before Altamont destroyed the dream.
on 28 June 2003
This was a great band, individually and collectively. It's a shame that the relationships have not been maintained over the years. Ce la vie! The really great thing about this album is the jamming aspect. Always known for the lyrical and political aspects of their music, the Fish could jam it up like the best of them. Indeed Barry Melton in his new life still does. But what performances have we on this jewel of a disc. I suspect that many of the people who bought this album did so because of the appearance of Dead members Garcia and Hart or even Casady and Kaukkonen and good luck to them because they will have been exposed to some killer playing on the disc. Barry Melton is on top form throughout and plays his heart out. My only regret is that there is not more of these shows or other live Fish performances around. If anyone out there is listening...WE WANT MORE! A highly recommended alum which should grace the shelves of any afficionado of West Coast Music.