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Review: Austin City Limits Music Festival 2004 on CD

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Austin City Limits. For over 30 years, ACL has transcended style, age, and anything else that divides musicians (and their fans) to bring some of the best music around. I tend to be a bit musically schizophrenic, so I love the diversity that ACL brings. I looked forward to the CD, figuring I would be able to enjoy some old favorites and find some new ‘must haves.’ I wasn’t disappointed.

The CD opens up with “Debaser” by the Pixies. I’ve never been much of a Pixies fan for whatever reason, but this was a pretty good selection (though I’m not sure I’d have started the CD off with it). Dashboard Confessional and Franz Ferdinand were both excellent. And the Blind Boys of Alabama doing “Walk In Jerusalem” (one of my alltime favorite spirituals) made the album for me.

A few bands I hadn’t heard before were Los Lonely Boys, Calexico, and Drive-by Truckers. These bands reminded me why I love compilation CDs so much — you always find something new to listen to.

Every CD has its weak points, though, and this CD had a few. I wasn’t impressed with Broken Social Scene — I found the vocals to be a little weak, but I chalk that up to my own musical taste. I’m also not a big Shelby Lynne fan. But the weak parts of the CD are more than made up for by the new discoveries I made.

They say that diversity is the spice of life. If that’s the case, the Austin City Limits festival is a spicy dish indeed. And I like spicy.

{EDIT — I meant to add this in, but somehow left it off}
Track list

1. Debaser — Pixies
2. Hands Down — Dashboard Confessional
3. Darts of Pleasure — Franz Ferdinand
4. Be Be Your Love — Rachael Yamagata
5. Crazy Dream — Los Lonely Boys
6. Walk in Jerusalem — Blind Boys of Alabama
7. It’s the Nighttime — Josh Rouse
8. Anthems for a 17 Year Old Girl — Broken Social Scene
9. Streets Are Callin’ — Neville Brothers
10. Your Lies — Shelby Lynne
11. Day John Henry Died — Drive By Truckers
12. Wheels — Cake
13. Way That He Sings — My Morning Jacket
14. Alone Again Or — Calexico
15. Brown Eyed Blues — Ben Harper
16. First Tube — Trey Anastasio

About Warren Kelly

  • http://www.dorksandlosers.com Tan The Man

    Awesome. Drive-by Truckers is a pretty good band – as is Broken Social Scene. What other bands were on the CD? Or was that it?

  • SFC Ski

    I think ACL should just start releasing 30 years of broadcasts on DVD; the historical and entertainment value would make it a worthy purchase.

  • http://www.dorksandlosers.com Tan The Man

    Seriously. Waiting for the release of Garth Brooks’ performance on ACL.

  • http://pewview.mu.nu Warren

    Tan — thanks for the reminder. The track list is in the post now. Can’t believe I forgot to do that.

    I think a DVD set of ACL’s history would be awesome. Very much in need.