Dave Matthews Band

Big Whiskey And The GrooGux King

Written by: PP on 07/01/2010 02:44:22

I've always meant to get more into Dave Matthews Band, since I only know one album by them prior to their seventh album "Big Whiskey And The GrooGrux King", their first studio album since 2005's "Stand Up". They've never really caught on here in Europe, because even though the band has a considerable following over here, that following is nothing in comparison to the masses overseas. My guess is that the DMB sound is slightly too all-American to appeal widely to the audiences here. "Big Whiskey..." is the FIFTH consecutive Dave Matthews Band album to open with over 400,000 copies sold in its first week. Their previous albums have enjoyed similar spectacular success: their most successful album "Crash" has been certified 7x platinum.

It's difficult to describe the Dave Matthews Band experience because it involves so many different genres. The band are mainstream rock / alternative rock at heart, but aren't afraid to experiment with extensive passages of jazz, blues, soul, jam rock, and even Americana country in places to create an eccentric sound that appeals to a music audience all across the spectrum regardless of background. And they do so with elegantly, seamlessly, and with style. Notice how I used the term "experience" when describing these guys, a key word in understanding exactly how to enjoy these guys to the fullest. Pop on a relaxing track like "Spaceman", and submerge into it's wonderful bass lines and country-rock acoustic guitars, notice the subtle grandiosity of "Shake Me Like A Monkey" and feel the chills down your back as the band transitions from trumpet-heavy section to a short, dreamy space-rock passage, or participate in an Orange Stage-size sing along during "Why I Am". Whichever style you find the most enjoyable on "Big Whiskey...", I feel like one term connects the band's sound and the feeling it gives overall: Orange Stage-band. DMB have precisely the sound I'd associate with Roskilde's Orange Feeling, that worry-free, life is amazing, lets make this world a better place type of feeling.

When you connect a feel-good mood and atmosphere with ridiculously good, innovative and unimitable songwriting, you tend to churn out albums that end up on people's best of lists. "Big Whiskey..." is no exception (although there have been a couple of less-enjoyable DMB albums I've been told), and because it mostly has amazing content - way too many great songs to name in this review - it deserves one of the highest ratings I've given in all of 2009.


Download: Funny The Way It Is, Dive In, Why I Am
For the fans of: Unique music, mainstream music that's ACTUALLY great
Listen: Myspace

Release date 02.06.2009
RCA Records

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