Whilst studio creations have the luxury of presenting the band which all the polish and glamour that the technology and time will allow, live recordings can be seen as a more honest representation of what a band really is all about. So this time as the latest offering from Tough on Fridays landed in the review pile we got to hear them in the flesh, as it were.
Okay, the mix isn’t great, vocals and beat tend to sit above the bass and guitar somewhat but it does get a bit more balanced as the show progresses, that’s live music for you but overall it is a great snapshot of a band plying their trade with no safety net. Retrospective kicks things off nicely, motoring indie energy laced with jagged guitar chords, Little Italy is a swaggering slice of pop rock, all groove and attitude and Lush runs on a buoyant bass line and allows guitars to shimmer and crash in equal measure.
Live recordings are always a trade off. What you lose in mix and refinement you gain in energy and drive and whilst this is certainly a bit rough around the edges it is an honest record of a band out there doing what they do. No compromise, no gimmicks, to post-production tinkering just a band going about their business. Remember when the whole music scene worked like that?