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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb
I don't quite get the generally luke warm reviews so far. To me this is a fine live CD. The sound quality on my system is pretty good, maybe not quite up to Live On Air standards but more than acceptable.

Ry and the band are in fine form and the recording gives you a front row seat experience. Highlights for me are Dark End of the Street, with great vocals from...
Published 7 months ago by DCL

versus
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not one of Ry Cooder's best
Ry Cooder fans like me will want this in their collections, but it's not one of his best albums by any means. There are some great moments, but also some rather weaker stuff and the live sound isn't great.

Good bits first: there are cracking versions of Vigilante Man and Crazy 'Bout An Automobile and there is, of course, some really fine guitar work in plenty...
Published 7 months ago by Sid Nuncius


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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not one of Ry Cooder's best, 14 Sep 2013
By 
Sid Nuncius (London) - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (No. 1 Hall OF FAME REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Live In San Francisco (Audio CD)
Ry Cooder fans like me will want this in their collections, but it's not one of his best albums by any means. There are some great moments, but also some rather weaker stuff and the live sound isn't great.

Good bits first: there are cracking versions of Vigilante Man and Crazy 'Bout An Automobile and there is, of course, some really fine guitar work in plenty of other places. The opening of Volver Volver is wonderful, for example...but the rest of it really isn't up to much, including some pretty dodgy tuning in Juliette Commagere's vocals. And that rather sums up the album for me - great in places but pretty ordinary overall.

Part of the problem is the sound, which is woolly, boomy and indistinct a good deal of the time. There is also a lot of intrusive audience noise, including a lot of that whooping in completely inappropriate places which is all about drawing attention to the whooper and nothing to do with appreciation of the music. It really needed to be mixed down because for me it spoils quite a lot of the quieter bits. (And what is it about Goodnight Irene? It's a pretty dull song and first Eric Clapton and now Ry Cooder have released...well...dull recordings of it. It's a mystery to me.)

I've loved Ry Cooder's music since I discovered Bop Till You Drop in 1979 (better late than never) and I'll certainly listen to anything by him, but I can't see me playing this very often. I suspect I'd have loved it if I'd been there, but as a record I can only give it a lukewarm recommendation.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb, 14 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Live In San Francisco (Audio CD)
I don't quite get the generally luke warm reviews so far. To me this is a fine live CD. The sound quality on my system is pretty good, maybe not quite up to Live On Air standards but more than acceptable.

Ry and the band are in fine form and the recording gives you a front row seat experience. Highlights for me are Dark End of the Street, with great vocals from Terry Evans and Arnold McCuller and brilliant accordion as always from Flaco Jiminez. Of course Vigilante Man is Ry at his best with brilliant guitar. I also love the closer Good Night Irene which features some really beautiful interplay between Ry and Flaco. Vocally Ry seems to have improved with age compared to the Live on Air set.

The 10 piece horn section don't dominate the set , rather they compliment those songs they feature on.

Overall this is a very enjoyable disc, if you like live music then buy with confidence.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rolling back the yearsl, 17 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Live In San Francisco (Audio CD)
I love this album, as it rolls back the years to the string of lp,s and performances in the late 70,s and early 80,s there is a warmth to hearing Cooder, Jimenez, Evans and Mculler enjoying themselves as they roar through this set. I,m a fan i might be biased i might even be wrong, but i still love chicken skin music live and i,ve got a feeling that i,m going to be playing this for as couple of decades. Knocked a polnt of for the between songs "banter" which i,m already skipping through but the playing is peerless
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Why Dont You Try Me, 11 Sep 2013
By 
D. Smith "davidsmith151" (manchester) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Live In San Francisco (Audio CD)
A bad Ry Cooder release be it a studio or live one isn't on the cards so far. I bought `live on air` a while back and really enjoyed it, especially on long car journeys. For me the winner is a really good `Dark End of the Street` `Schools Out` being a close second, whilst the others just feel `pedestrian`. It may well be a grower.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Borderline, 10 Sep 2013
By 
Leonardo27 (London United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Live In San Francisco (Audio CD)
Any release by Ry Cooder is a cause for celebration and since his live releases have been pretty thin on the ground (well, legitimate ones anyway), this one has been eagerly awaited.

Thirty six years on from his last authorised live album "Showtime" it's a shame, given the immense catalogue that he had to choose from, that three of the songs from that record are duplicated this time around, "School Is Out" a particularly surprising choice.

Most satisfying is Cooder's lengthy, stripped-down revisiting of "Vigilante Man", where freed from the shackles of the large supporting ensemble he gets down to what he does best with some very tasty guitar work. "Crazy 'Bout An Automobile" is another standard that Cooder has long since made his own and there's nothing wrong with it here, although the definitive version of that tune is to be found in the all-too-rarely aired 1987 concert film of Ry Cooder and The Moula Banda Rhythm Aces in Santa Cruz, which is positively unhinged. (By the way, when is someone finally going to release an authorised high quality CD or DVD of that magnificent show?)

Juliette Commagere, whose seductive vocals have illuminated much of Cooder's recent work, delivers a disappointingly mechanical and soulless rendition of another Cooder perennial "Volver Volver" whilst "Goodnight Irene" is similarly lifeless. Give me Tom Waits' version any day.

Otherwise, it's the older material that fares best with "Do Re Mi" and "Boomer's Story" the pick of the bunch.

School is out. End of term report: "Good, but could have done better."
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4.0 out of 5 stars Well Yes..... Pretty Good,.... Mostly, 20 Mar 2014
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This review is from: Live In San Francisco (Audio CD)
I rather like Live in San Francisco and it leaves me with the impression that it would have been great to be there! However as is often the case the difference between being there and listening to the recording leaves you with the feeling that those who were there on the night got the better end of the deal. But its not a bad album , Crazy 'bout an Automobile, Why Don't you Try Me and Boomer's Story are welcome old friends but this version of Dark End of the Street verges on the maudlin while Do Re Mi and School is Out are a bit ordinary and Volver Volver very ordinary indeed. This is not the case however with the Outlaw Jesse James ,Wooly Bully and a stand out, dark, stark, Vigilante Man. These three songs make it all worth while, but if you're not an initiate of the man this might not be the album to start you on the path to enlightenment.
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5.0 out of 5 stars As always, Ry is on top form, 7 Mar 2014
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Ry Cooder is a genius and a master and such a generous musician, bringing so many other players and styles to the attention of loyal fans like me
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4.0 out of 5 stars funky live cooder, 14 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Live In San Francisco (Audio CD)
if you know cooder then you probably heard these before but its well done played well with some alt takes on favourites nice atmosphere,bit of a companion piece for cd "showtime"from 70's and recorded at same place interesting to hear the change in voice and guitar tones etc
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5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic album by ry cooder, 15 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Live In San Francisco (Audio CD)
this is a fantastic album by ry cooder i have played it over and over again love it he gets better with age and his guests were something else you will not be disapointed if you buy this album
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5.0 out of 5 stars Cooder Magic!, 1 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Live In San Francisco (Audio CD)
The albums magic is clear in this offering. Cooder is as brilliant as ever. I've been an avid fan since the seventies.
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