Sunday, January 09, 2005

LIVING COLOUR, "LIVE AT CBGB'S TUESDAY 12/19/89" (EPIC/LEGACY) ***


Guitar wizard Vernon Reid and his three bandmates were at their peak for this 1989 home-court gig. Living Colour's politically charged funk-rock has a real edge to it here, upholding the standards of black rock pioneers Jimi Hendrix, Sly & the Family Stone, et al.

The band plays four songs from its 1988 debut disc, including the single "Cult of Personality." In addition, there are six tunes from the second Living Colour LP, which hadn't been released yet and elicit little audience response. There's also a cover of Bad Brains' "Sailin' On" and two previously unreleased Living Colour songs. Complete with liner notes by Greg Tate, "Live at CBGB's" is a must-have for hard-core fans and a good introduction for the uninitiated.

Jeff Johnson

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